- Laziness: Probably the biggest issue that pretty much most people have come across. Just can’t be bothered to start or don’t have the motivation to start. Once they eventually find the motivation it’s too late.
- Repeating the same old boring routine: Some people believe revision means sitting in the library for 10 hours a day and staring at a revision guide. There are so many methods out there which can be used to revise.
- Lifestyle: Preparing for an exam is more than just revising. You gotta get enough rest and make sure that you drink enough water and are eating properly. Revision is only have the preparation.
Those are just some of the things I remembered off the top of my head.
This might not be helpful for everybody but it's how I'm planning on doing my revision from now on:
1. Make sure you understand it!
Not memorise the content but understand what's happening and why, especially for my chem and maths where I literally just spit out the steps/theory I learn.
2. Create a checklist, not a timetable.
Instead of thinking that you've achieved something in an hour, it'd be better to have a list that you know you must complete, without time restrictions so you just get on with it, whenever.
3. Use the Pomodoro Timer
Basically, working in 25-min intervals with a 5-min break. It just means that you don’t zone out and helps me focus all my attention on one thing instead of drifting off.
4. Active Recall
Don’t memorise! Test yourself instead, can you pull that information out of your head with the slightest nudge? Especially for Biology and other content heavy subjects, put all that content into context and keep spinning it around your head in different ways. Write questions for yourself, make flashcards and test yourself and just use the information and have an easy grasp of the subject!
5. Spaced Repetition
I’d suggest using the Curve of Forgetting to really hammer the information you learn into your brain. Don’t let yourself forget the information and have to relearn it, you don’t have to do it everyday but just go through the information again (especially using active recall).
6. Use different methods to study
Make posters, illustrate the entire thing, talk aloud, teach, jump whilst listening to a video, highlight, use flashcards, anything.
There’s no such thing as a specific type of learner, just make your studying interesting and experiment and find what works for each subject for you!
What do you find hard, don’t put off the things you find hard, because you will kick yourself when it comes to exam time, trust me!
8. For Application subjects, eg. Chem, Maths, Physics
PRACTICE! There’s no way around it, the questions are going to be so different and you just need to try and have an idea of how to work things out.
9. Talk to the wall.
Recite everything that you know. Pick a topic and just say everything you can about it, this especially helps for essay subjects, it gives you a chance arrange everything store the information because everything you say will have a link.
Say, Economics, pick a Macroeconomics objective, like Inflation, and just say everything about it that you can. Define it, then talk about reasons, causes, examples, questions that could come up about it and try to answer those.
You’re basically creating a huge mind map in your head, but without using a reference or taking too much time.
10. Manage your Time
During my economics mock recently, my timing was terrible and I failed to actually get to the 20 mark essay so just make sure you know the test you’re doing and figure out how log you want to spend and just have it absolutely down by the time you go into an exam hall.
11. Just Start.
The hardest part of revising is starting, so just sit on that table, put your phone away and write something! Anything, 3 minutes in, you will hae your head over the piece of paper totally into it.
Print the examiners reports!!
They're so useful they're telling you what they want to see!!
Rewriting my class notes up in neat and filling in any gaps with my textbook really helps me a lot.
Listening to instrumental music while I work is great because it helps to stop me becoming bored and demotivated while also not being too distracting. I prefer VGM, especially any Animal Crossing soundtrack because they're all perfect for revision!
Practise, practise, practise.
'Practice does not make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect' - Vince Lombardi
Year 11's going to be a female dog. So far what I've got is:
1. Past Papers - yeah, I know new GCSEs make this very fun
2. Examiner's Reports - '... but keep your enemies closer'
3. Anything Related to Revising And Learning, Do It At School - Go earlier to school, come back later from school, whatever you need to fulfil this. This way, you are using your environment to stimulate your brain. Keep all the procrastination/social media/extra curricular at home, and keep the learning and revising at school. Obviously, ask permission from your teachers first.
4. If you can't do number 3, use a study lamp - put it on your desk. Turn it on when you're studying. The moment you lose your pace, turn the lamp off and walk around for 5 minutes. Rinse then repeat.
5. Find A Study Buddy - What's better than using peer pressure to force our generation to do something?
6. Habits - Every time you finish a page/chapter/revision resource, reward yourself (but not too much). This is the way habits are formed: Cue, Reward, Repeat. If you make this into a habit, well, you'll apparently have no trouble at uni.
7. DON'T compare yourself to others - honestly, I don't know what's more off-putting.
Yeah, that's all I've got.
watch study with me videos for motivation
Practise past papers. Go through papers, and mark them. Properly. Don't say 'Oh yeah I would've put that' and give yourself a mark. Go through the questions you lost marks on and keep going until you can get a perfect answer for that question.
My main tip is to use your teachers as much as possible. Revision is your chance to get one on one help with anything you've been struggling with over the course. It's a lot easier (and less anxiety inducing) to ask what you think are stupid questions during a session where there's only you and a few other people. Also, as someone said earlier, don't stop excercise and training or other regular commitments if they're not seriously affecting your ability to work. The fact that I kept going to training throughout my GCSEs is what kept me sane!
(This is for GCSEs) For Maths, make sure you practice AS MANY PRACTICE QUESTIONS AS POSSIBLE; don't just assume you know it and think that it is easy, or you will get a surprise when you take a look at the exam. For Science, use the revision guides and then do exam questions for every topic: again, don't assume it is easy or that you completely understand it all. For English, learn key points about the context of the poem/novel/play, learn about 3 quotes per theme/character or poem, and practice a few past papers. Also, check the specification for all your subjects and make sure you know EVERYTHING.
i hope to start revising after these mocks and this is what i have planned:
make a mindmap to connect ideas on subjects like history and re, then turn it around and write prompts for each 'branch' as prompts. then get another sheet and using the prompts, write down everything you remember. this really helped me recall the opposition the nazis faced in germany and it only took around ten minutes! obviously you have to then go back and write anything you may have missed in a different coloured pen. i will also be using flashcards to learn key terms and dates for these subjects.
more history: one of my school peers makes brief timelines to record bits of history and remember dates on some a3 paper.
for maths, im planning to complete all the maths practice papers. my tutor provides me with one or two a week anyway but i want to redo them all. also, watching videos on mathswatch!!
for english literature and language, im going to look at exemplary/grade 9 answers, annotating them and seeing if there's anything i can steal (phrases, terms, etc.) i will then move onto making plans for questions that may come up and writing paragraphs for some. i will also use flashcards to learn my quotations and mindmaps to connect themes, ideas and characters.
i'm going to try and learn my spanish speaking answers a few days at a time and use flashcards to learn conjugated verbs, level nine phrases and the speaking answers. i will also try listening to spanish music and watch spanish movies during my free time. i will also be using memrise and duolingo!
sciece... i honestly have no idea how to revise for science but hopefully i will be revising through my revision guide, the workbook, myGCSEscience and freesciencelessons.
good luck to everyone else! hopefully some of these helped.
Find out what works for you and go with it and apply it to different subjects in a different way, and don't worry if it's not the thing that works for other people. You can revise for as long and as arduously as you want but if you don't revise smart, you're wasting your time and preparing for failure.
Start revision early and don't be disheartened by poor mock results because you can work hard to improve in the real exams
Be confident in yourself and your ability! If you know you've revised properly then there's no need to worry for the exam, all that's left to do is trying your best! x
The fundamental step is to get yourself organised. Have you got a tidy workspace? If you think you work better in a clean environment organise your room as well! Organise loose sheets by chapter in folders, a to-do-list for things to do today etc.