By the time students complete undergraduate studies they will have written over 70 exams! Studying for exams is a daunting process and can bring about much stress and anxiety. That’s why we’ll be discussing 10 study tips that have helped us successfully tackle exam seasons and ace our finals!
Create a study schedule and pace yourself
By printing out monthly calendars and mapping out which topics of study you’ll cover each day, you’ll reduce stress and ensure you have sufficient time to cover important topics. Be careful not to overestimate how much you think you can study in one sitting, schedule in breaks, and set realistic study goals.
Organize your notes
Look at your course outline/syllabus and/or the table of contents in your textbook to give you an overview of the key topics studied in the course. Double check that you have corresponding notes for each lesson, and if you’re missing any, follow up with your teacher or a friend.
Know your study style
Knowing your multiple intelligence can help to inform how you study. For example, if you are musical, you may make your notes into a song. Interpersonal learners will study better in groups by quizzing each other whereas intrapersonal learners will do better alone. For visual learners, drawing pictures or mind maps may be beneficial, in comparison to auditory learners, where voice recordings may be useful.
Practice, practice, practice
Practice makes perfect! Re-do your old tests or find last year’s exam and try answering each question as if it were the actual test. Practice using flashcards or predict which questions your teacher will ask on the exam and try answering them.
Take regular snack and physical activity breaks
You want to keep yourself hydrated and power your body with healthy foods to keep your brain in tip top shape while studying for and writing the exam! Examples of great foods are: granola bars, nuts, apples, yogurt, berries, and seeds. Physical activity will help increase your energy and keep you alert!
Teach other people
Find a few friends and teach each other different topics in the course. Not only will this serve as a refresher for those learning, but will also act as a test for those teaching. Chances are if you can teach to others effectively, you probably know the content thoroughly.
Get adequate sleep
During sleep the body repairs itself and consolidates memories and facts from the day. Sleep is also a crucial ingredient to being alert for an effective study session. Therefore, it’s important that teenagers are getting 8-10 hours of sleep and young adults between 7-9 hours each night.
Learn more than what’s necessary and investigate
Though this sounds counter intuitive, learning background information and investigating the topic without pressure of memorizing might help you retain more. Watch YouTube videos, read blog posts, or look up documentaries as fun ways to investigate, contextualize, and consolidate what you’re learning.
Talk to your teacher
Many students underutilize the opportunity to visit their teacher during extra-help sessions or exam review days. Since your teacher is usually the one writing the exam, attending these sessions will give you the advantage of learning additional tips and tricks specific for their class.
In many subjects you can memorize large quantities of information by simply searching for and understanding patterns. Recognizing patterns in content such as with the the periodic table and root words in anatomy, as well as noticing connections between ideas and concepts throughout course content will aide in efficient studying.