May 26 2015

30 Revision Tips

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The big test is coming up, and you need to carve some time out of your busy schedule to revise the material.  These 30 revision tips can help you better retain the information not only for your next test but also for your exams going forward.  You may just find that revising can even be fun once you take away the apprehension.

  1. Eat breakfast.


It’s more difficult to concentrate when your tummy’s rumbling, so make sure you eat a healthy breakfast.  That means things like oatmeal and fruit, not fried eggs and bacon.

Two slices of hot buttered white toast for breakfast served with a knife on a side plate as an accompaniment to the meal


  1. Get a good night’s sleep.


It’s more difficult to concentrate when you are tired, so make sure you leave plenty of time to catch up on your Zs.



  1. Take accurate notes.


Writing down everything that the teacher posts on the board may help some people, but you’re probably better off writing down more of the key points and fleshing them out later.  Plus, if you focus too much on writing down every little thing, you may miss some of the bigger, more important things.



  1. Highlight your notes in different colors.


Committing different-colored chunks of notes to memory makes it a lot easier to recall them later on.


  1. Pick a quiet place to study.


Choosing a place that is free of distraction will help you to focus better on the material at hand.


  1. Make a revision timetable…and stick to it.


Revision Timetables can be a great way of what you need to study and how much time you need to spend on each subject.  Don’t forget to account for breaks as well, including holidays and vacations, or when you just need a day off.


  1. Ask questions when you don’t understand something in class.


You may be shy to raise your hand, but pushing your anxiety aside and asking that question can save you hours of study time down the line.


  1. Use flash cards.


Flash cards can be incredibly effective at helping you remember information, particularly definitions and formulas.  You can use them by yourself or with a friend or family member.


  1. Revise with a friend or family member.


Speaking of friends and family members, it may be helpful to study with them.  Hearing what you need to study come from someone else’s mouth may sound silly enough or memorable enough to help you remember it for the long haul.


  1. Exercise.


Exercise is a great way to clear your head.  If nothing else, it forces you to focus on your breath, which is relaxing enough in itself.



  1. Study first thing in the morning.


Studying first thing in the morning can be more effective because you aren’t yet tired from the other events of the day.


  1. Use different-colored index cards or ink to help you retain the information.


This is helpful in the same way that highlighting your notes in different colors can be helpful.


  1. Rewrite passages that you can’t commit to memory.


Sometimes rewriting what you need to memorize can help you retain the information.


  1. Don’t wait until the last minute.


If you save everything you have to do for the last minute, you may end up so overwhelmed with anxiety that it will be impossible to concentrate.


  1. Practice with past exams.


Taking older exams can prepare you for the types of questions you’ll run into on the next exam.


  1. Plan for breaks.


Your schedule can’t be all work, no play, or you’ll burn out.  Breaks are just as important as work.


  1. Reward yourself when you’re done for the day.


Go to the movies or have an ice cream.  Treat yourself.


  1. Take a deep breath – it helps.


  1. Remember that you don’t need to get 100 percent to be a success.


  1. Try to explain what you’ve read in your own words.


Explaining what you’ve read can show you just how much of it you understand.


  1. Use separate notebooks and folders for each class.


Showing each subject the respect it deserves will help you focus on each subject separately when it’s time to study.


  1. Ask your teacher what especially to focus on when you study.


It can’t hurt to ask questions.


  1. Avoid cramming at the last minute – it doesn’t work anyway.


It is physically impossible to learn all of the information you need to know in one night.  You either know it, or you don’t.


  1. Study right before bed.


Studies prove that the closer to bed you take in information, the longer you retain it.


  1. Join a study group.


Different perspectives can help.


  1. Pay attention to your diet.


Eat foods like fish and nuts, or dark chocolate.  Drinking 12 coffees to stay awake won’t help as well as you think.


  1. Make it fun with decorations.


Use glitter or googly eyes to make your note cards (and the information on them) more memorable.


  1. Use graphs or pictures as another way to understand the information.


  1. Use mnemonic devices to absorb more information at once (i.e. Roy G. Biv).


  1. Write up – and take – a pre-test.


This is another great way to determine how much you really know.