Secrets to exam success

As the exam season looms, Condor Properties offers some timely revision tips…

Okay, so this is the time of the year when we don’t envy you, exam period. This makes us even for all those mornings when we were getting up and going to work as you were rolling in from a night out.

But we’re not bitter about that and to prove it we have come up with some revision techniques that will help you pull a geek grade out the bag this summer. Unfortunately there is no getting around the fact you will have to put some serious hours in, but these top tips should make it so much easier…

Have a break

The most common mistake when it comes to revision is trying to overdo it; cramming information into your tired brain is a complete waste of your time and you’re unlikely to retain it.

Instead, you need to subscribe to a philosophy called “strategic renewal,” which basically means reenergising your mind and body through regular breaks. Try studying in work blocks of 90 minutes with half hour intervals in between (give yourself two hours over lunch). During those breaks it is essential that you get refreshments and stimulate yourself in another way, whether that’s through music or exercise.

Take notes

Re-reading your notes is good, but re-writing them is even better. That’s because when you write something down on paper – whether it’s a date, a quote or an equation – you are more likely to remember it, than if you just read it. And by writing we mean writing with a pen and paper and not tapping into a computer tablet.

Start early

Boffins at Kent State University, Ohio claim that breaking your revision down into bite-sized chunks is the most effective way of retaining it. So forget being a last minute man or a down-to-the-wire woman, start your revision early and chip away at it bit by bit until exam day.

It’s also worth drawing up a revision timetable. As much as you might hate the idea of creating a “system” for yourself, it is actually the most effective way of ensuring you work productively and efficiently.

Double up

Revising in pairs is a bit like working out with a gym buddy; you can push each other, help when things get tough and offer constructive feedback. So we advise getting some nibbles and drinks (soft ones) and inviting a classmate over for some group revision. Test each other’s knowledge, encourage each other to give better answers and offer praise when it is due – you might just find this is one of the most effective ways of revising.

However, be warned, we have spoken to a number of students who have used group revision as a pretext to worm there way into the hearts (and beds) of classmates they have had the hots for. While we applaud their efforts, we have also seen their grades and advise against this.

Eat well

Forget beans on toast and budget ready meals – start treating yourself to some slap-up dinners. Just like the rest of your body, working that brain requires fuel and during the exam season, you need to be filling up with the premium stuff. Plus, if you’ve been revising all day, you deserve a feast.