28th July 2021
When it comes to exam season, we know how difficult it can be to sit down and actually revise. It can be tiring, stressful and even daunting, but it’s also worth getting it done right in order to give you the best chance at acing your exams. Below you will find our guide to the best revision techniques for students, some tricks on how not to form bad revision habits, and guidance to help you on your way to a top grade.
Ideally, you should be starting your revision efforts early. For many, this will mean months in advance, not days before the exam. Take the time to spread out your revision efforts into bitesize sessions, this way it won’t seem so daunting.
This could be a simple weekly timetable with time set aside in order for you to sit down and revise, or an in-depth timetable that spreads out your revision workload easily in order for you to ace your exams. When it comes to a timetable, creating one that better addresses your study weaknesses will help you more in the long run.
In an ideal world, this will be a well-lit study space that takes you away from easy distractions such as your phone, your television and your laptop (if you’re not already using it for revision). You should also avoid using your bed for this, as you’ll create negative associations between your revision and your sleep pattern. This is one of the best tips in terms of revision techniques for students, as sitting in a designated room will help you focus faster.
For many, simply reading revision notes will not be enough to drive home vital information. Why not vary your techniques and include practical questions, flashcards or workbooks in order to revise better.
Although you may not get the exact same questions on your actual exam, practice papers allow you to time how long it takes for you to answer questions in preparation for the exam season.
Although revision is necessary, it’s also necessary to ensure that you don’t burn out. Make sure you take proper breaks and even let loose once in a while. Relax, reset, and carry on. It might seem counter-productive, especially in a guide on revision techniques for students, but trust us on this one.
Many believe that simply re-reading your notes is enough revision before an exam. However, your brain will appreciate rewriting notes too!
If you use your laptop to revise, or your notes are easy to carry, why not try revising in a different space? The change of scenery may help you focus, and depending on where you live, you could find amazing areas and buildings to revise in. Check out your local libraries or even coffee shops for this, and pick a quiet area to bed in for the day.
Sleep is a lot more important than you may realise. It can help you focus, recharge, and reset for a new day. Aim for 6-8 hours of sleep a night in order to maintain optimum brain function.
Much like sleep, drinking water and staying hydrated is a key component of brain function and health. It’s handy to keep a reusable water bottle nearby and sip from it throughout the day.
Revising is very important before an exam, but so is exam preparation itself. Make sure you have a spare pen, arrive on time (if not earlier than your scheduled time), and utilise some calming breathing techniques in order to keep your mind sharp. You could use all of the revision techniques for students in the world, but still fail your exam due to poor time management.
Much like sleep and hydration, a well-balanced diet and exercise routine can help your body function optimally, giving you the space to focus on revision before exam season.
Ideal for anyone revising in-depth topics, this can be done by dividing up the time before your exam with the number of topics you need to cover. Then, add these topics into your schedule and cover them in small sections (preferably in order).
Much like the last tip, setting smaller goals will help you revise over a longer period of time. Setting unattainable goals can overwhelm and complicate your revision process, which is why it’s ideal to sit down and set out a revision plan before your exam.
Avoid re-reading your notes over and over again by condensing them into smaller and smaller notes for you to glance at and remember. Ideally, you should condense your notes into a handful of words that can act as buzz words.
If you find it hard to concentrate when you’re revising, why not ask someone from your class or course to revise with you? You can help each other with revision tips and keep each other focused.
Although songs that are lyric-heavy can distract you from the task at hand, listening to music that relaxes you (such as piano albums) could be exactly what you need in order to maximize your revision and keep focused.