"University exams are like A Levels, the only difference is that there are a lot more of them and they are much more difficult". This is the kind of thing you will probably hear first year uni students say, but don't panic! With a good revision method you can revise and stay calm at the same time!
Revision timetable = indispensable!
It doesn't matter what is looks like, an organised table with lots of pretty colours everywhere or a some barely illegible scribbles, the important thing is that you make one! Some people like to set daily revision goals and even crazier people like to set hourly goals.
It's possible that you won't follow your timetable step by step, but it doesn't matter as long as you get to where you need to be. It's a way of setting goals for yourself
, but it can also help you structure your revision.
We have the habit of thinking we're Sylvester Stallone when it comes to making a revision timetable
, but keep in mind the wise words of Socrates: "know thyself", if not, you'll never keep up.
Making notes might take a long time, but it's worth it!
Shortcuts are forbidden!
You should start by revising the subjects you find least interesting,
or the ones you find most difficult to get the most difficult part out of the way!
Exams aren't like horse races, you shouldn't make bets
. "We studied this chapter in a lot more detail that that one, so I'm pretty sure it'll be in the exam!". NO, nothing is less sure. All it takes is a teacher with a twisted sense of humour to mean you fail your exams. You will probably know certain chapters better than others, but make sure you always have something to write down in the exam.
Revising at the library, what could be better!
You've heard people talk about spending whole days revising at the uni library, but why? It's a very good idea if you need to concentrate,
rather than staying in your room watching a whole season Game of Thrones in one day... there are less distractions and you have all the information you need at your fingertips!
You can go on your own, or as a group.
If a friend from your programme comes with you, you can help each other out. Group revision can be pretty motivating too!
Don't underestimate the value of revision buddies!
The "off by heart" technique is over: go the extra mile.
It's useful if you're a law or history student to learn information off by heart, but what examiners are looking for is proof that you have really thought about the subject in question
Learning things off by heart is a trap
- either you will end up forgetting one little thing that could throw you off completely or you will regurgitate everything you learnt in class, which might not please your teacher.
Having a break isn't forbidden (it's actually advised)
The human brain is a curious thing! You think you can control it, but after two hours of revising at your desk, your brain starts controlling you. It doesn't want to absorb anymore information?
Very well, give it a little rest.
The best kind of pauses are those where you can take in some in some fresh air. Lying down on the sofa and watching the TV is counter-productive... it a good chance to walk the dog, or just go for a walk if you don't have a dog.
There you have it, exams aren't as stressful as they might seem! You just need to be organised and motivated (especially so that you don't have to do resits). Good luck! Find more articles about student life here!