Secrets of exam success revealed
Put "study skills" into one particular search engine and you get almost
27m responses offering help.
Some may help you but how do you know which ones? So that despite the
technology and vast oceans of information on tap, more time can be spent surfing
Don't make that mistake.
Understanding these limitations - and knowing that grades depend on student
effort and planning - is more important and a good starting point for success in
And with only weeks left now until the start of the exam season, now is the
time to stop mucking about and get on with it. Regardless of your state of
readiness there are certain things which can be done to improve your results.
So read on. Swots too.
And parents can play their part - by being seen and not heard. Tea, sympathy
and understanding are the best they can offer. There is little else they can do
and pointless turf wars may therefore be avoided.
So read on if you are a student with exams to sit, as you are the one that
can make a difference.
But getting started is often the most difficult bit. Three hours in your bedroom
- with good intentions - but playing with the cat, texting friends and looking
out of the window instead, is pointless. Go for 10 minutes only but work in that
time and do nothing else. That's all it takes to get started.
Have a 10-minute break and start again, gradually building up to 20 or 40-
minute periods, whilst keeping the breaks at 10 minutes. Try it and see. You may
even work for longer periods without a break.
Each of us is different and if it works for you, then do it. So that when you
are working, you work, and when relaxing, you relax. The two don't mix.
CREATE EXTRA TIME
Grab extra quality study time during the day by getting up earlier or shortening
your lunch break. Thirty minutes each school day would give an extra
two-and-a-half hours a week, which may allow you to have a night off. Recreation
should be built into your schedule. Make sure you get some but don't let it take
Know when and where your exams are. Do past exam papers for practice. Ask your
teachers if you are stuck. Work with a friend, if you really do work and it
helps. Do two or three subjects in an evening, starting with the one you hate
and finishing with the one you enjoy. You may even get to like the hated subject
as you work on it and overcome those initial difficulties.
THE BIG DAY DAWNS: FOCUS
Exam rooms and dentists' chairs share certain memories, but the former need
not be painful, if approached in the right way. A leisurely breakfast and a walk
to school would be a good start. Don't rush and don't be late.
Avoid friends, they can be off-putting and may confuse your thoughts. Mobile
phones should be left at home. You could be disqualified if you have one with
you. Have a glucose sweet to help the energy go to your brain. Take six deep
breaths to relax and ignore those around you. It's your exam that concerns you,
IN THE EXAM HALL - TECHNIQUE COUNTS
Read through the questions, jotting down formulae and points to remember on
the question paper. Choose your questions, starting with the ones you can do to
build confidence. Don't spend too long on any one question and try to do the
If you run out of time with only 10 minutes left for a 30-minute question,
then do it in outline only - stating the main points and facts, if an essay -
and by jotting down formulae and how you would use them to reach a solution, if
science or maths. More marks can be gained this way with limited time available.
Don't leave the exam room early and avoid friends discussing the paper
afterwards. Nothing can be done to influence your marks on that paper now, but a
lot can be done on the papers you have yet to sit. And that work should start
Put your finished exam papers in a drawer and forget them, until your
grandchildren ask to see them. They are of little value to you now, so don't
waste that precious study time which you have available before the next exam,
where you can make a difference.
"Work", after all, comes after "success" - only in the dictionary. Remember
that and do the best you can. I wish you well.
By George Turnbull
Student exams doctor, Qualifications and Curriculum Authority
"Awesome..Students should take help from this article!Very Informative."
City, Country: Karachi, Pakistan
"Very nice advise for student those want to give exam. its give more support to students."
Name: Muhammad Ali
City, Country: karachi, Pakistan
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|Updated: 14 Oct, 2014|