A and A* students... Share your revision tipsWatch
I did memorising chapters from the textbook in small chunks, like pages at a time then whole chapters.
Also I did it in short bursts, normally sessions of no more than one hour/hour and a half.
I didn't revise much until may and June, mostly late June. I made a really general timetable which i stuck too, it pretty much detailed what subject on which day, I'd advise you to follow something similar.
1) Make lots of notes.
2) Revise independently.
3) Do lots of past papers.
4) Stock up on stationery.
5) Work hard.
I'd say more... but I can't remember the post I made about this.
I hope it helps though!
and relax, exams are important but there are other things in life
This is what I did all:
Since in most of the subjects I was the highest achieving student in the class, I was often used as a 'teacher'. I helped a lot of students when they had problems. Believe it or not, but this is a great way of improving your knowledge of a subject. Helping out students, who are struggling, will not only help them, but also you. This worked great for me, because in Maths for instance, I sometimes had forgotten previous chapters, but by helping others, I managed to revise the previous chapters again and again.
Also do a lot of past papers (as you said), but only do them once you have finished the syllabus (book). Go through questions that you found hard in the past papers and keep re-doing them until you get full marks. (But don't just do it again and again, but leave gaps, as in don't do the same paper again and again, but do others in between.)
Try to finish your course as soon as possible. Try to learn the whole course with at least a month to go to the exams (I personally prefer 2 months). In those 1/2 months, do the past papers, do questions. Go to the library and find question books (you should be able to find books full of questions only) related to your course. Make sure you go through as many questions as possible. If you don't understand certain questions, ask your teacher.
Make sure you know EVERY question of past papers (no point remembering answers or something, but) make sure you know HOW to do each kind of question. I don't know what course you do, but in Maths, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology this is very helpful. Keep revising until you are 100% sure you KNOW it ALL!
Divide your time well. Don't do too much work at once. Have breaks and also create a time table. (If you send me your email address, I can send you a template of my revision time table in Excel.) Make sure you don't spend entire nights studying, because that's just pointless. People say don't do last minute revision, but if you haven't been doing any so far, I suggest you actually SHOULD do some last minute revision, especially if you are unsure about some topics (shouldn't be the case in the first place though). For me for instance it is extremely helpful.
If there are any formulas, etc to be remembered, make sure you learn them. If you just can't, just try to memorize them right before the exam and as soon as you enter the exam hall, just write it on the front cover of the exam paper. At the end of the exam you can just erase it or cut through. That's what I do to remember formulae when I simply can't memorize them.
I don't know what subjects you are doing, but if its a Science or similar subject, make sure you know WHY things are the way they are. Don't just accept it. For example in Maths, make sure you know WHY the integral of 1/x is ln(x) + c and don't just accept it because the teacher says it.
Make sure you have some images in your mind that tell you how things behave and WHY. A mind map is often very useful. It should be something where you have a visual image, because people tend to remember that a lot easier than simple text.
I hope it was helpful to you and all others that are interested in finding out how to improve their study skills.
Any questions, don't hesitate to ask
EDIT - btw I just realised how long my answer got. Sorry for the length.
Thank you this is so helpful!
I took Maths, Physics, History & Chemistry As's this year and your point about actually understanding a topic rather than accepting it is 100% true. This is where i bombed in the exam i could answer questions whilst revising but when it came to the real thing i felt like i knew nothing at all :| I need to find an effective way of revising for all the exams i'll be taking in January
Maybe you got over confident? Or you didnt read the questions properly down to nerves? Maybe the examiners made a mistake, and you should get a remark. I really don't know, from what you said it seems like you did all the right things!
I worked very hard for my As level exams but came out with very bad grades. I read during every break/ lunch and sometimes 4 hours straight. I worked through EVERY past papers, made revision notes, cut out on social life and always read before every new chapter. My teachers and students said i had potential to get AAAB grades. How come i messed up? Please tell me what i did wrong. Share your revision tips as well! Please. My subjects are biology, chemistry, Religious Studies and sociology. Thanks.
Make your notes uber neat and even colourful - anything to make text on a page look more exciting!
What someone said earlier about helping people is true, I think. People say the best way to learn is to teach, and I guess that holds up. I find it refreshes my memory on how to do something and, when asked by an exam paper, I can do it again.
Good luck next year
i would just add to this, read and understand the specification
and relax, exams are important but there are other things in life
I got really lucky when I did Applied Business. The specification pulled up my coursework, but pulled down my exam. Fortunately I had more coursework than exams! :P
I finding having a really well-organised folder helps! Get about 200 plastic wallets and some dividers. Use the dividers for each subject, and then divide each subject up into its modules. I think that the reason this helps is that it helps you to know the course, and everything it encompasses...e.g. in Maths if you want to revise natural logarithms you'd know that they only come up in C3 (and C4? Haven't studied it yet), whereas normals logs are C2.
Maths, all you can do is past questions and exam papers. That works though, cos all the questions are the same.
History: Understand the basic "story" of the era, then learn the key dates and corresponding event titles. Then write loads of answers till you find a style that works for you. With this, I came out with one of the highest History A2 marks in the country.
Economics: God knows...I learned all the tutor2u notes and did past papers but still wasn't confident, but I got the A* somehow. I'm not good at the subject at all. Hope for the right questions?
Not speaking from experience of course...
I gave my advice earlier OP - but I think I'll only be of real help to anyone who needs help in Law, Psychology and English. Feel free to ask
My only tip is probably not to worry. If you go in stressed out, you'll probably make a lot of mistakes. I was convinced of failure having not revised, and (I kid you not!) in my History exam I spent my time just thinking to myself "Once this is over, you can go home and play GTA". I felt that it was a predetermined fact that I would fail, so my mind was a lot clearer than thinking that I should do well and stressing over the possibility of failing.
Other than that, just read the book. Seriously, that's all I ever do and I've gotten As in those exams.
-Revise in time.
-Distance yourself a bit from friends.
-Reduce night-outs. You'll have the last laugh later.
-Make a plan and stick to it.
-Study everyday even if its just 10 minutes. I revised German grammar whilst on the train journey home from school everyday. Aced my German A Level.
-Marathon sessions are good only if you know everything to start with.
Have goals that you wish to work towards.