Do you have exams just at the corner and are worried because you feel you are not prepared? If so, you are not alone.
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Many students who are preparing for exams especially after coronavirus lockdown feel the same.
But you need not worry.
The good news is that there is a way out.
See, there’s a very obvious reason behind the fact that some students always score well in exams and others don’t.
Yes, intelligence is certainly a factor, but more importantly, it depends on the choices that students make.
What one needs is the brain of an average student but the zeal of a winner.
I’m going to give you 15 strategies, what I call the 15 commandments.
Read it carefully, apply it and rest assured that you will be fine.
- Say no to group study:
Avoid your friends like plague! When four buddies get together, we all know the books feel ignored. But if you can arrange a group study session with the studious topper, that can be permitted. What I’m trying to suggest here is know what’s good for you. No one knows your circle better than you do, so if a student thinks that a group study session with friends will seriously get things done, he can go for it. Otherwise, the suggestion is to stay away.
- Don’t put pressure on your hand:
Yes, one must practice writing to improve his speed and to remember things better, but one must not put too much pressure on their fingers or they might get stiff while writing the paper! That would be a pretty bad situation!
- Get away from phones and laptops:
Major reason for examination failure is the attention deficiency visible in today’s generation. You cannot read two pages without checking your Whatsapp, Can you? These are the things one must avoid during finals. So the gadgets must be kept out of reach while one is studying.
- Don’t sit all day:
This will drive you crazy and leave you frustrated. That’s not how one should get things done. Fix study hours and stick to them diligently. Also, when it’s not study-hour anymore, do not go near the books.
- Don’t over work:
Avoid studying late or studying for too long. Take rest when you need it. The mind works overtime during the exams and consequently one feels more tired. On top of that, if you start denying yourself the required hours of sleep, your body might not be able to withstand the strain.
- Don’t discuss your papers.
Seeing your friends rush to the teachers with the exam papers to determine if they’ve answered the questions correctly is a common occurrence. Perhaps this habit stems from our natural behaviour as students.
However, what’s done is done. Curiosity kills the cat. Don’t waste your time thinking about what you have answered. Finding out the right answers will only make you more nervous for the upcoming papers, especially if you spot a mistake that could lead you to dwell on it for hours.
Instead, once you’ve completed an exam, stuff the question papers into your bag and keep your mind focused on the next exam. Keep your mind on the present!
- Don’t compare yourself with others.
Many of us are guilty of comparing our revision progress among our peers. We tend to be curious about how much they’ve studied and want to know if we’re ahead or behind. This, however, may not be a healthy habit.
Comparing yourself with others can cause you to feel dissatisfied with yourself, leading to lower levels of confidence. You also don’t want to be seen gloating about your progress as it may stress your schoolmates.
Therefore, focus on your own studies instead and try to be the light by exuding good vibes. It’s important that everyone is supportive of each other during this critical time.
- Don’t Crammed your brain.
If you don’t already know, cramming is probably the least efficient way to study.
When you cram, you’re only temporarily storing the information as you do not have a deep understanding of the subject. Additionally, since cramming often occurs at the eleventh hour when you’re short of time, it can increase your stress levels and ultimately have a negative impact on your ability to concentrate.
So if you haven’t covered a subject or topic, don’t stress yourself out by cramming. Instead, go through chapter summaries to extract key information and work through past year papers to identify topics that you are weak at. This will be a better use of your time.
- Don't Drink Too Much
Don’t drink too much water, a sip every hour is all you need. Dehydration is not going to be a problem during the exam, but drinking many pints of water and needing a toilet break every five minutes is. The sip is just for a quick diversion to give your brain and hand a breather.
- Don’t Panic:
You’ll either get into the exam room knowing your shit and feeling good, or you’ll feel the exact opposite, in which case you’ll be inclined to panic. Don’t. Panicking will only make things worse and will induce a mental block that you definitely don’t need at this moment in time.
Take a few deep breaths, read over the questions and try and recall as much as you can. If you’re still super stuck, harness your inner creativity and rely on the ancient art of bullshitting. At this point, it doesn’t matter what you get down, as long as it’s relatively coherent. Put your mind at ease and remember that this exam means little in the grand scheme of things.
- Don’t Rush
When you’ve got a strict time limit set for an exam, trying your hardest to get through it as quickly as possible is instinct, but also a pretty bad approach to take. Rushing will only mean a higher chance of misinterpreting questions and making careless and preventable errors.
At least once, I’ve found myself halfway through writing a totally irrelevant exam response, all because I didn’t take the time to try and understand the question. If you plan your time wisely and get to know what’s being asked of you, you should be able to glide through the exam stress-free.
- Don’t waste time.
Don’t spend too much time on one question. No matter how well you know your stuff, poor time management could end up being your fatal flaw.
Take your time but don’t take too much time, remembering that all questions need to be adequately addressed.
A good way to ensure this is to get all of the more straightforward questions out of the way before moving on to trickier ones.
This saves you the frustration of not getting those easy marks all because you spent too long addressing a single question.
Well! There you have it — I hope you’ve got a ton of value from this post.
While it is true that preparing for exams can be stressful, what you need to do is to learn to stay in the present and focus on what you can do instead of what you cannot do. You’ll be at the finish line before you know it!
Which of these tips above will you use in preparing for your exams?
Leave a comment below and let’s learn from you.
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