How can I do better in exams?

Question:

How can I do better in exams?

Answer:

It’s important to get organised right at the beginning of semester, and to revise each week. Keeping up with your study and doing regular revision is by far the most effective way to study and the most effective way to learn. To help you stick to a study schedule, draw up a weekly study timetable that includes classes, lectures, individual study time, breaks, time for family and friends, and any other commitments. 

When you’re studying for an exam, make sure you have a strategy:

    •    Set goals – what do you plan to learn in this session?
    •    Study in short blocks (no longer than 50 minutes, then a 5-10 minute break)
    •    Don’t study the entire semester’s materials in one day or one session
    •    Identify and summarise important issues, theories, concepts
    •    Identify relationships and links within and between lectures
    •    Study with other students, and incorporate activities like quizzing each other and teaching each other
    •    Review past exams
    •    Write practice answers and answer them within the time limit
    •    Develop concept maps, diagrams and timelines to aid memory, and to link concepts, themes, and issues.

For more information about strategies during the exam itself, check out the Learning Skills website. StudyWISE, the online learning resource, also has advice about exams.