Try and keep up with weekly content throughout the term because when you get to exam revision you should be truly revising, not trying to catch up on content that you didn't do during the term.
Developing a Professional Attitude
Exams require knowledge, skills, practice and a positive attitude. Start studying early in the term, have clear goals and organise your time. All this will help you develop a positive attitude and perform at your best. Negative self-talk, such as, 'My life will be ruined if I fail' will not help. Instead, try to imagine that you are in the exam and feeling confident and terrific. Success!
Have a good breakfast, wear comfortable clothes and check that you have several pens and everything else you are allowed to bring with you into the exam.
Re-read your summaries, but don't cram new information. Leave home in plenty of time so that you will arrive early and avoid last minute panic. Expect to feel a little nervous; nobody is immune from exam anxiety. Some adrenalin is actually useful if channelled!
Use your reading time to get an overview of the structure of the paper. Read all instructions very carefully. Know what sections and questions are compulsory. Read all of the questions carefully and select the questions you will answer.
Plan the amount of time you will spend on each question. The time should be proportional to the allocated marks—if a question is worth 30% of the marks, you should allocate 30% of your time.
Decide on the order in which you will answer questions, making sure that you do not leave compulsory questions until the end. Answer easier questions first as these will boost your confidence and may even allow you to pick up some extra time that you can spend on more difficult questions.
To do well in essay exams you must answer the question precisely and concisely; be sure to present your arguments and ideas clearly—your marker is not a mind reader!
Essay questions usually require more than just facts. You may have to give an opinion, develop an idea or discuss a position. You need to explain your ideas clearly and produce specific examples. Before writing, make a quick plan, as you would for an assignment essay.
In multiple-choice exams the chance of getting an answer correct by guessing is not very high. Your best strategy is to know your material well.
Open-book exams can lull you into a false sense of security, but you need to be thoroughly prepared. There is no time to read or find new information in an exam, so text books can be a handicap unless you know your way around them very well. Be very familiar with the texts and know where to find sections you may need to refer to. Coloured post-it stickers are very useful for this purpose.
After the exam
After the exam, be sure to reflect so you can build on strengths and learn from mistakes.
Top 10 Revision Tips
Mr Bean Prepares for His Exams