Exam Preparation Tips

Preparing for exams can be daunting because we don’t want to accept that we will have to sit them any time soon. However, my biggest tip if you are preparing for your exams is to start early. That doesn’t necessarily mean make flash cards after your first lecture (although this will probably help you), however you should at least start the essential reading if you want to keep on top. Starting your reading early means that when you reach the revision period you can work on condensing the material rather than having to learn it first.

 The next most important piece of advice I have is to make a revision timetable. They do not take a long time to make and can help to make sure you are doing an equal amount of work for each module, rather than focussing on your favourite/s. It is good to make sure that your timetable runs like a full time job; do not start before 9, end before 5, give yourself breaks and do not revise on weekends (unless your exam is on the Monday, then you should probably make the exception). This timetable should ensure that you do not under or overwork which can lead to a ‘burn-out’, which no one wants around their exams.

I would also advise using different revision methods; although you may have a favourite, using the same method can become repetitive and boring. Here are some techniques to try; index cars/mind-maps/notes, posters/visual material, key words/phrases/themes, summary tables/grids and teach someone. There are more methods which you can find with a quick Google search.

Check out the available past papers, not to predict the questions on your paper but as exam practice. Try to answer some of these questions in timed conditions. There is nothing worse than being in an exam and realising you have spent too much time on one essay but you have 40 mins to answer the other.

Procrastination is probably the biggest hurdle when it comes to revision and unfortunately we are yet to find a cure. So, in the meantime; turn your phone off until your break so you are not tempted to mindlessly scroll. Also, make sure you have a good supply of drinks and snacks to stop that becoming an excuse to have a break and if you happen to be a productive procrastinator like me, make sure you environment is tidy before you start; remember revision is more important than putting washing away!

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