- Scan through all of the shorthand notes you have prepared
- If you haven’t already done so, look through past exam papers and decide roughly how much time you will spend on each section
- When it comes to subjects like history for example, where many essay questions are asked, it is worth writing out some keywords to help you remember the vast amounts of information you have already learned. On the night before the exam revise these keywords instead of referring back to the books – as this is time consuming.
- Target areas of your course which you feel weakest in first
- If there are certain aspects of your course that you need to know completely off by heart, for example maths formulae/theorems, write them out a couple times on blank sheets of paper.
- Say definitions out loud or close your eyes and perform a mind-scan as the final part of your revision
- Ensure you have all of your stationery ready to go for the morning
- Get a good night’s sleep. It is essential that you are alert and ready for the exams and nothing guarantees this better than a solid 8 – 10 hours rest.
Getting Through the Exams:
- Make sure to allocate yourself enough time to read through the paper you are being given.
- If there are questions on the paper which you can choose between, it is a good idea to plan which sections you will attempt at the start of the exam so you can keep track of where you’re going.
- Read all questions carefully and make sure to answer exactly what has been asked
- In longer questions it may be useful to plan your answers first via Mindmaps
- If a question doesn’t work out the way you hoped or your answers look a bit strange, move on to other questions and earn marks in other areas. Go back to the problematic questions at the end and if there’s time try to make a second attempt
- Stick to your time limits. If you haven’t finished a section within your planned time, move on and invest your time in other questions
- Don’t leave your exam centre too early. If you are finished before the time is up, reread and perfect your work. I would recommend that people stay until the very end.
Handling Gaps between Papers:
- If you are in a position where you have two exams on the one day and have free time between them it is worth bringing along your shorthand notes.
- Before you study, eat something nutritious, drink some water and clear your head of all the thoughts relating to the exam you’ve just taken.
- Use your time effectively by focusing on the areas that you are most unsure of
- Look over your short hand notes (Mindmaps or otherwise) in a quiet environment (if possible) and when entering the exam centre again, think through all of the information – in a kind of ‘mind-scan’
Alleviating Stress and Fatigue:
- Stick to a structured study plan and stay organised.
- Do your best and take one day at a time.
- Focus on the impending exam. Don’t self assess and think about the exams that you have already completed or predict what will happen on future exams.
- Try not to get caught up with worry and instead focus on achieving positive results
- Even though you are in the middle of an exam period make sure to do things you enjoy on your breaks. Listen to music, go for a walk – do whatever it takes to relax
- Eat well and go to bed at a reasonable hour. I wouldn’t advise anyone to engage in late night crash study as it is stressful and makes you feel more tired than you need to be for the exams ahead of you.