In this article we are going to talk about the What are good revision strategies? Most of us, if not all, have had our parents give us a lecture about how important it is for us to study for an exam. It’s pretty common as a student to hear about the need to do well in school for you to be able to get into a good college. Once you are done with school, then comes college and the importance of doing well in college so that you can get a good job. But this is never-ending because it doesn’t stop at college. Do well at your job, so that you can earn a lot of money. Earn money and become successful so that you can get married and have children. Then buy a house etc.
The overemphasis on doing well in educational institutions is misplaced. Don’t get me wrong, do well, but not for reasons such as getting a job. Getting a job and becoming financially independent is merely a part of it. The greater underlying goal is to learn and grow as a person. The point is not to memorize for tests, get good marks and forget everything that you have learned. If you don’t pay attention in school and college, it makes it that much harder for you to learn and grow.
Though school is not merely about doing well in exams, it still plays a crucial part in learning. Despite the misplaced emphasis and hate on exams, they are a way for us to decipher human intelligence. Though exams are ineffective in telling us how emotionally intelligent an individual is, to an extent, they still tell us about the intelligence level of an individual.
What are good revision strategies?
Some don’t like to study while some are interested in only some things and pay attention to only those areas. Exams force students to learn. Though some may frown upon the forcing part, it is nonetheless essential since learning helps us progress in our life. It is important to revise well for exams. That is the purpose of this article, to talk about the top ten strategies you can use to revise. It doesn’t necessarily have to be for a test. Some like to revise throughout the year, while some in the last one or two days. Regardless, the following revision strategies have something for all –
1. Make A Plan And Stick To It
Usually, without a plan, things get messy. To do well in exams, you need to cover most of the syllabus, if not all. Plan out when you will study all the topics and by when you will finish it. Merely studying the syllabus isn’t advisable. Ideally, you should also do mock tests to get a feel for the type of questions you will get in the exams and practice answering all the questions within the time frame.
A great way to study would be to start with the topics/chapters with the most weightage and then move onto areas with lesser weightage. This way, you will be at least be able to pass. The point behind planning is to cover most (but preferably all) areas you need to for the exam. You don’t want to go into the exam hall still trying to cram because you didn’t have enough time.
More importantly, the worst thing to do is to make a plan but then forget about it. Sticking to the plan is as important as making one. What good will a plan do if you don’t use it? Sometimes you can’t stick to it 100% of the time. When that happens, don’t be afraid to change them instead of tossing the whole thing out. Plans change all the time!
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2. Visual Learning
A neat tactic that I have come to appreciate a lot more is visual learning. Use things like diagrams and flowcharts because they will help you remember things more clearly. I like to refer to YouTube videos from time to time because it helps me remember things. I visualize what I learned by relating certain concepts to the person explaining them in the video or the colors and pictures used in the slides.
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Practice is a good way to remember things. You can try to jot down the things you have already studied off the top of your head without referring to any material. It will let you know what things you do know and what you have yet to learn properly. Another thing you can do is try solving questions similar to the questions you think will come in the exam. Lastly, you could try attempting past papers and mock questions to get a brief idea of the format of the questions and get used to the time limit.
4. Take A Break
When rushing things, people often forget to take a break. They want to maximize the amount of time they can study when they are short on time. But this way of learning or memorizing is not helpful at all. Research suggests that the learning curve drops if you continue to study beyond a certain period. Take a break for about 5-10 minutes after every hour of studying. It will help you stay refreshed and help you remember/understand more things.
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Depending on the type of exam you need to give, the amount of material you need to study can range from doable to a lot. And when you have a lot of material to cover, things often get messy. To avoid running into this problem, you can section the things you need to learn depending on how important they are. You can do this by highlighting certain sections. You can use a highlighter or choose to underline important areas. But highlighting makes life easier because it takes less effort to figure out where the important material is in the booklet. You could also opt to color code, depending on the degree of importance. On a similar note, you could also use different colored pens, and they’ll do the same. After studying the essential bits, you can move onto the less important ones that are still required to be studied.
Use websites such as Quizlet or Cram if you don’t feel like making physical notes. You can make flashcards on their websites to learn or decrease the amount of work you need to do (like making your own, separate notes). Apart from flashcards, websites such as Quizlet can also help you learn in other ways. There are different ways to quiz yourself on the website, by playing various educational games.
7. Stay Away From Distractions
When you’re studying, the act should have your undivided attention. Do not loiter around or watch random YouTube videos or fall victim to the infinite scroll that many social media use. Stay away from such distractions. Keep your devices or anything that will make you lose your focus away from you. Otherwise, your attention will be divided, making it that much harder for you to study.
8. Avoid Cramming
Many people start cramming one or two nights before the exam. Usually, it is because they did not feel like studying before. For some, cramming works. But it usually doesn’t do justice to what you’re studying or learning. There is also the issue of completing the syllabus before running out of time. And even if you do finish in time, you did in it a hurried manner and most likely don’t remember things adequately. You might think you do, but by the time you start writing, what you learned gets jumbled up, and you end up getting confused.
Avoid cramming by studying the portions days before the exam. It not only will it help improve your grades but will also help you remember things for a longer period.
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9. Sleep Well
Your brain needs time to recharge itself. If you don’t give it time to do so, you’ll run into problems such as poor attention span. It will negatively affect your revision. If you cannot pay attention to what you are studying, then you will barely retain anything. If that happens, then you ended up wasting your time. You might as well have slept since you hardly learned anything. If you pull an all-nighter and then give the exam, you might not make the best decisions while taking the test. Hence why, sleep well so that you have enough energy to study properly. Otherwise, your revision will be no different from doing busywork.
10. Eat Healthy
This last strategy is very underrated. If you eat junk food, you starve your body of the required vitamins and minerals. For your brain to function properly and for your mind to exercise different tasks (like memorization), these nutrients are necessary. Along with sleeping an adequate number of hours each night, make sure to eat a well-rounded meal as well. The failure to do so will affect your revision and your grades. You won’t have enough energy to perform certain tasks.
Exam time can be a stressful period. That is why, hopefully, this article helps you lower your stress and helps you prepare better for your exams. Thank you and take care!