The tried and tested best way to revise for exams

Jiscon 8 April 2021
stressed student revising

Find out how you can avoid stress while revising for your exams this year.

Nerves can often kick in when exam season arrives, but there are ways to avoid stress and ace your exams. Did you know that anxiety to perform well can trigger underperformance in students?

If you often find yourself wondering how to revise for all your exams in a week, then keep reading for our top revision tips.

1. Lay the groundwork early

If you’re asking yourself ‘when should I start revising?’ the answer is now, so lay the groundwork well in advance by keeping on top of your work from week one. 

Whether you’re revising for your GCSEs, A-Levels or degree, the exams are set to challenge you, test your ability to manipulate concepts and apply them to new situations. Cramming the night before won’t cut it; you need to expose yourself to a range of hypothetical situations in which to apply your knowledge, and that takes time. 

2. Practice, practice, practice

Although revision methods differ from person to person, you should figure out the techniques that work best for you. Practising past exam papers is a great way to get a feel for the exam and how to answer the questions. Pay close attention to multiple-choice problems, especially to the wording, as they often include red herrings. 

3. Revise little but often 

Studying gradually works better than concentrated learning sessions, says Dr Dave Haylock, senior lecturer in psychology at Newman University. Why not try out the Pomodoro Technique, proven to improve your concentration when revising? 

4. Listen to your body

Succeeding in exams isn't just about learning; it's also about looking after yourself during the days and weeks leading up to the event. That means that eating well and getting enough sleep should be on your priority list. Check out the best study snacks that will feed your brain as well as your body, and then catch some z’s for problem-solving superpowers. 

5. Practice techniques for staying calm 

Did you know that playing music before the exam can help keep you calm?

Here are some other tips on staying calm: 

  • Don't turn the paper over straight away. Breathe deeply, take a moment and then look at the questions.
  • Start with the easiest question.
  • If you freeze or go blank, look away from the paper. Breathe in and out until you are calm enough to continue.

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Jiscon 8 April 2021