Studying day in and day out might seem like an easy task. Many students already find this challenging at the best of times. Consider the background of a global pandemic, and it’s not surprising that a lot of students are less than inclined to study their lessons. If you have an exam coming up, though, you’ll need to improve your study skills. Here are smart tips to help you turn those review sessions around.
Know the Test Format
Most teachers will tell you if it’s an essay type test or if it will feature a multiple-choice section, or something else. Will you need to draw a diagram or map something out? Knowing the format in advance will help you get ready for the test.
Get Last Year’s Papers
Whether you’re a student at a high school or an international school, you’ll use the same technique. Look for last year’s study materials and question papers. Practice with those questions. That will help you get an idea about the coverage of the exam.
You and your friend have different learning styles. Don’t try to check up on how your friend is reviewing just to copy the way s/he is reviewing for the exam. Instead, determine the learning style that works best for you. Use that to review for the test. What works for someone else might not work for you and vice versa, so don’t rely too much on what you see other people do. Start with what feels right for you.
Reviewing at the very last minute isn’t going to help. Set aside time for your review sessions. Do this well in advance. That way, you can take your time with every section until you’re fully satisfied that you’ve mastered the material. Cramming also induces stress and when you’re stressed, your concentration levels drop, which hurts your ability to retain information. If you want the facts to stick in your brain, then review early. Don’t wait until the very last minute before you start preparing for the test.
Limiting yourself to a few chapters of the syllabus is good if you’re pressed for time. But if you have a little bit more to spare, don’t hesitate to go over the entire syllabus. Some teachers love to toss out questions that would require you to read a few of the later chapters to get the correct answer. If that happens, you’ll be ready.
Start with the Difficult
Go over the chapters that you find difficult first. If your brain is alert, then understanding and retaining information will be easier for you. Move on to the easier ones as you get on. That’s one way to cover all the materials you need to cover for the exam.
Pick the Right Time
When are you the most alert? Some students study better first thing in the morning while others find their attention span much longer and their memory skills better when they review in the afternoon. Learn the time that’s most convenient for you, that makes it easier for you to study and study during those hours. You’ll be amazed at how easy it is when your mind is fresh and alert.
Change Your Environment
If you keep losing your focus or you have a hard time concentrating, it might be a good idea to check your environment. Are you near the window? Do you often catch yourself looking outside? You might want to face a different direction to avoid any distractions. If the area is noisy or if people frequently walk past behind you, you might want to look into studying in your room.
Stay Away from Social Media
It’s easy to get lost on social media platforms. You say you’ll only be there for about thirty minutes or less and the next thing you know, you’ve been there for an entire hour or two. It’s best if you limit your time on social media if you must absolutely check your messages. However, once the alarm rings, go back to your books or reading materials. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t get to be active on your social media pages for a few days.
You might think that studying from dusk till dawn is a good strategy. But it’s actually not. You need regular breaks. Breaks keep your concentration sharp and prevent your focus from lagging. Without breaks, you only run yourself ragged and exhausted. That won’t help you remember your lessons.
Have proper and nutritious meals. Junk food can make you sleepy and compromise your concentration levels. Brain food like peanuts, macadamia nuts, pistachios, almonds, and more will also help.
Start preparing for your exam with these tips. Be ready to give a hundred percent. Good luck!