From the first day back at Uni we feel the pending dread of the 12 week build up to those unwanted exams! Well, it’s exam time once again! We can feel the old procrastination bug taking hold and suddenly anything but studying for exams seems more exciting. You grab your books and notes out, get yourself settled down ready to study and suddenly rearranging your highlighters into colour order is the way to go. It’s really hard to focus because you can feel the world outside beckoning your name. I’m not gonna lie it’s definitely a struggle to keep focus and it can be really boring and draining, but I have a few exam study tips that work for me and may help you get through the next 3 weeks with as little discomfort as possible!
My first tip is to plan. I have an example calendar plan that I would do, which you could use as a guide to making your own. Remember to know how you learn. I know that I can make my notes in two days and I can learn them in one day. Everyone has different learning limits so know them and plan ahead.
Making handmade notes is my second tip. While reading the textbook works for some it is a form of passive learning which means your brain does not retain as much of the information you have just whizzed over. The next best thing is to make notes on your computer from your book, class notes and PowerPoint slides. This is somewhat effective but because you have not actually written them, and they are not in your handwriting it is actually harder for your brain to store the information. This is why I suggest making yourself handwritten, colour coded notes from your textbook, class notes and Power Point slides. While this may not work for some, I personally lock myself in my room for as long as I need to condense my notes and then have a break before exams begin.
This brings me to my next tip which is to start making your notes the day after your classes stop before SWOTVAC. Yes it is tempting to take the weekend off before SWOTVAC and try to relax etc. but from experience if you start condensing your notes for exams the day after your classes finish then that gives you an extra two days at least in case anything goes wrong and if you are lucky it gives you a couple of days off before you have to learn them. As well as this I allocate two days of SWOTVAC to each subject and aim to finish my notes by then.
These are my exam study tips and I find they work really well for me. Remember if you are on a roll don’t let things distract you. Once you feel your brain turning to mush or your hand cramping get up and take some kind of walking break and eat and drink. Don’t stress! You will get through them! GOOD LUCK!!!