Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

How to Score Well in Your Exams

student studyingExams can be stressful. There are no shortcuts to success, but we tell you tips which wouldn’t disappoint you and help you score well.

Revise-revise until you learn
Revisions though appear monotonous to you, they are crucial for securing good grades. The key to learning something well is repetition; the more times you go over the material the better chance you have of storing it permanently. While revising it is difficult to plough through the mountain of notes all the time. Dr. Dawn Hamilton, the author of Passing Exams recommend that you chunk down your work by reducing pages of reading to a few sentences. Hamilton also suggests that you link key ideas in our head with a rhyme or acronym.
Mind maps are easy and quick to do, and a very effective way of revising any topics. Be as creative as possible when developing the map. Use colours, symbols, pictures, shapes etc., these will make the map easier to visualise and remember. Start with the main idea or topic in the centre and the related information or concepts, as key words, branching out wards (the more important concepts are closer to the centre).
Take tests. After studying a chapter testing yourself on it will increase your retention capacity. Studying from past years question papers is going to give you an idea of the kind of questions that are asked during exams.
Put the phone on silent. While studying put your phone on silent, so that you do not feel obliged to answer each phone call.

Eat well. Stress and exam time is inseparable. No wonder with stress levels shooting high, nutrition takes a back seat. Downing innumerable cups of coffees to trudge through the night for all night study marathons will leave you jittery and crash your immune system. Nutritionists, advise on the importance of breakfast to fuel your day. She says, “The right breakfast will be a combination of protein and carbohydrates. Healthy options are—instant oatmeal or whole grain cereal with raisins and milk; vegetable porridge with boiled egg. Drink eight to ten glasses of water everyday to re-hydrate yourself.”

Snack time. Snacking on nutritious fare every three-four hours is important to keep your energy level high. Fruits, nuts and sprouts are healthy options.
Stress. Stress happens during exam time. It is the outcome of exams that makes us worry a lot about it. Borrow a little technique from self hypnosis and visualise yourself doing well in your exams every night while drifting off to sleep. Learn deep breathing and practice it while taking breaks from studies.

Sleep. Exam time is no excuse to sacrifice on sleep, particularly the night before exams.
The D day
On the D day avoid reading a new topic, or staying awake all night revising the subject. Rely on skeleton notes for quick revision.
Handy tips for fairing well
Go to bed on a decent time the night before exams.
Stay relaxed while writing your exam paper. Breathe in slowly and exhale. If this does not work chew gum.
Some students believe in the magic of lucky food or pen. If that charm works for you, no harm in continuing with it.
Spend the first five minutes to read the question paper well.
Manage your time in such a way so that you have five minutes to go through your paper before you hand it over.

All the best!


Archana Darshan

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Category: Exam Stress
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