I don't think I've ever met someone, who actually enjoys revision. We all want to lead a successful life by getting amazing grades ; however the unfortunate truth is, you can never achieve amazing grades without revision. No matter how dull and boring it can be, revision is the only key that we have in order to achieve academic success and lead their dream life. Personally, I don't enjoy studying - to me it's pointless , unless I have an exam coming up and only then, I revise by probably two weeks, a week sometimes even 3 days before the exam. People are always shocked that I didn't bother with taking a time out to revise for the full academic year but, still I'm able to catch up with everyone and sometimes even beat them at getting a higher grade. My secret? My revision strategy. I've written a couple of tips, that I personally do and have worked wonders for me and I hope they will for you too. Enjoy.
Tip #1 - Declutter your space.
Whether, you enjoy revising in your room, your living room or even on the roof. You will not be able to get somewhere, without cleaning up your 'study space' and making sure you have everything you need to start your revision session. So start off by polishing your study table, putting away all the items that have nothing to do with your revision away e.g. magazines, ipod, phone etc. Then start loading all your revision items on the table (or the floor) wherever you are studying really. Make sure everything is nice and organised. As a messy study area = a messy state of mind and very messy revision.
Tip #2 - Make sure you have everything you need
By having all your equipment with you , you are less likely to disturb your revision and waste your time on looking for what you need. My revision equipment consists of : a couple of biro's (usually black, blue and red) , 2 pencils, a highlighter or two, a notebook, some scrap paper, an eraser, my calculator if I need it and of course the essential sources I need to study from.
Tip #3 - Mindmap your subject
This tip, is especially useful for planning out essays. Start on the centre of the page and write out the subject or the topic you need to revise. Then start out by branching out, everything that is linked to the subject as well as, everything linked to each separate topic. Your mindmap, doesn't need to be super complicated, it just needs to be clear and concise. It should be able to highlight, everything you need to know, by splitting each part of your revision in to sections. If you need to revise for more than one exam, then do separate mindmaps for each subject.
Tip #4 - Organise your time
I've heard so many stories about people spending too many hours revising. They're the ones who usually come on the day of the exam half dressed, with blue bags under their eye. Talk about asking for beauty help 101 ! If you don't want to show up to your exam, looking like you were attacked by an animal on your way to school, then you need to organise your time. By organising your time, you will be less stressed and will feel less overwhelmed by the revision. I try to study for 45 minutes for each of my subjects , taking around 5 - 15 minute breaktime between each study interval. I do this because I have the concentration span of a fish and studying for hours for me, would be like commiting academic suicide. I'd learn nothing and will achieve a migrane.
Tip #5 - Start with the basics
Start revising using your textbooks and class notes and highlight all the information that you find useful, or if your book is borrowed, just get those sticky notes and sticky-fie your textbook. I like to start my revision by learning all the key definitions that I need to know. This is because definitions are usually worth around a mark on the exam and I believe that a mark is all the difference between getting a B and A. After, you've done that. Start studying from other books and resources, like the internet - there are so many useful sites you can study from. After gathering your notes from each of the sources you used; start by combining everything together and try to make your 'final' notes as simplified but, as factual as possible. Some people like to colour code, their notes. Personally, I think that's a waste of time. However, if you have a very visual memory, colour coding could do wonders for you, especially on the exam when your brain remembers something because of a certain colour you used. Just don't go overboard.
Tip #6 - Get rid of your distractions.
If you are a big procrastinator like me, then this is something you NEED to do. Deactivate your facebook account or twitter or whatever social network you use and switch off your phone and hide it somewhere or give it to someone until you are done revising. I like to, do everything I want to do before I start revising because then I'd have no choice but to actually study. Also, I've noticed that sometimes, revising at home can be actually one of the biggest distractions ; so try studying at the library or if you are an outdoor person like me and love nature, then study at the park . This is exceptionally fun, in the summer time, when you get a free glowing tan whilst revising at the same time.
Tip #7 - Practise Practise Practise !
Do as many exam papers you can and study the markschemes so you'll know exactly what the examiners want. They repeat the same questions every year just with different wording, so make sure you know exactly what to expect before the exam.
Tip #8 - Stay Calm, Cool and Collected
Exams are no big deal, so don't stress. Although they are an important part of student life. The world will not stop rotating if you fail an exam. However, by following these tips, I gaurantee you , you will be able to pass your test. As long as you stay calm and don't panic. Try not to ask your friends about what they've been revising and for how long, as this can put you off your revision and make you either too lazy to bother, or too unmotivated to try. Everyone revises differently, but the important thing to remember is , it doesn't matter how much you know what matters is how well you understand.
I hope you enjoyed these tips and if you have any other tips that you do , then feel free to comment below and tell me about them !