Exam Preparation | 5 Revision Tips
25 Apr 2016
Feeling like your only friend is the library? Make things easier with these helpful tips
No doubt it has become irritatingly obvious that your university library doesn’t have enough seats for those who may have exams coming up…which happens to be pretty much everyone. When you do finally find a place to sit and work, it’s probably time for a mid-morning snack , or maybe an afternoon nap. However, at some point you will actually have to get some revision done.
There are no new revolutionary ways to revise to ensure you get the best grades possible. We have all done it many times before and for most of us we will have to go through it many times more. But that doesn’t mean a little helpful reminder of some basic revision tips won’t be beneficial!
1. Firstly, always allow enough time. Sometimes this is easier said than done, especially when you have many essays, exams and other work to complete. But the more time you allow, the greater chance you will give yourself at performing well. Plus, you will be allowing for any mishaps that may happen along the way. It could just save you an extremely late night before your exam, cramming in as much as possible, leaving you tired for the big day.
2. Still reward yourself. No one can survive being cooped up in the library for days and days, no matter how hard you try or how much Redbull you fill yourself up with. Ultimately, you will only make yourself less productive and probably start thinking you can actually fly. So give yourself a bit of a break every now and then and perhaps reward yourself with the odd drink with some friends or a game of football at the park. Maybe staying away from potential binge-fest scenarios would be best, such as Netflix. I know it can quite easy to watch an episode of something but end up watching it for way too long. A bit of time spent away from work is useful, so long as you know you can be productive again afterwards.
Along with this, plan what your rewards will be. It will help you with finishing an essay, or revising a new topic before you take a break, rather than midway through something. Whilst it won’t be the end of the world if things didn’t go to plan, keep reminding yourself that I only have this chance to get it right and stick to your plan! If it would help, getting someone to change passwords on some of your biggest distractions like Facebook and Netflix then do it! That way they can only let you onto things when they also know you have finished a bit of work you wanted to get done before you had a break. But of course, choose someone you know can be trusted with your passwords…
3. When it actually comes to revision, there are many techniques. For instance, working alone or in silence is best for some, but in groups is more profitable for others. I am sure by now you know what works best for you, so stick to it and make it happen. Find people who work in a similar way to you. Whatever that may be. Either way, it will enable you to stay on track, push one another to work harder, and enjoy your breaks together as well. For instance, I know that whilst I like to work alone, knowing that a friend is also working alone nearby, helps me stay focussed as I know they’ll tell me to concentrate if I procrastinate for too long. And visa versa.
4. One thing I have done more recently is voice recording my work. Whether an essay or revision notes, it is incredibly helpful to hear your work being read out lout. If it is something like an essay, hearing your work will help you spot mistakes in your writing such as sentences that don’t make sense. Or, hearing revision notes can help you remember them better. You can listen to your notes wherever you are. Often walking places is useful, or just before bed. Just a useful tip that had become very easy to do with apps like Evernote or even just voice memos on your phone.
5. Always have water. Like, always! Drinking water is quite possibly the best and easiest thing you can do to help you revise, stay focussed and remain refreshed. Set reminders on your phone or laptop to drink water on a regular basis. On this note, eating healthily is far better for you during this time. It is so easy to buy a takeaway after a hard days work, or just snack on crisps and chocolate. We all do it. But eating well will help you stop feeling exhausted and tired and will also keep you focused for longer periods of time. It will also help you retain information better. The same goes for regular exercise – even a short walk. We are always told about eating, drinking and exercising well during this time, but we still often ignore it. But we want to help you so perhaps make this the year you don’t ignore it.
Good Luck with all your exams this year!