With only a few weeks left until the official study and exam period, now is a good time to start thinking about study skills and making a revision plan – and not just thinking about it, but doing something about it! Being a former A grade student in procrastination, my best intentions regarding revision were never quite enough on their own, so I strongly recommend putting a plan in place and trying to stick to it. You may need to be a little flexible and adjust if necessary, but having a plan will make you feel organised, less stressed and less inclined to waste valuable time and give in to all those ‘vital’ distractions like social networking, painting your toenails, watching too much RWC, and staring aimlessly out of the window or into the fridge. While it is 100% natural to feel nervous before exams, the more prepared you are, the more in control and better you will feel.
If you are not sure where to start, this article from the University of Cambridge (examinations) has some comprehensive and common sense tips on study skills, revision methods and exams. The University of Glasgow includes some memory and recall tips on their website. Following are some of the main points:
- Create a comfortable, quiet and distraction free study space
- Start revising as early as possible prior to the exam
- Create a realistic revision plan – try to revise often, a little each day. Allow more time for subjects you find difficult and ensure you are aware of what to expect in the exam. Display your plan somewhere visible!
- Choose a revision method (see articles above for ideas on revision tools) that suits the subject but try changing methods for variety
- Take care of yourself and build in time for breaks and some social activities
- Prioritise any last minute revision – use your revision tools to consolidate existing knowledge
- Most of all, think positive!