The University of California, as well as The University of British Columbia, have conducted research aimed to discover the most effective ways to study for the exam. Daniel Willingham, one of the local professors, has shared the results of a study to help students pass their exams with the highest scores.
Exams are approaching, and every student understands how difficult it can be to study. However, many students conduct the same mistakes: they procrastinate, do not practice, and simply waste time on useless things. However, teachers don’t ask which subjects you wish to take for your examinations. There is a list of obligatory exams, so there is no way to avoid them.
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Reading Is Not a Clue
It is important to know what you should focus on before starting to read your exam study materials. As the practice shows, reading too much does not improve student’s memory unless he or she can simply copy the full text in his mind after ‘scanning’ it diagonally.
If you really want to help your memory, take notes on what is the most important according to your class syllabus, and try to focus on them. It is impossible to memorise the whole material, so don’t waste your time on reading your textbook page by page. Highlight keywords and key phrases to work with them.
Self-Testing as an Addition to Rereading
Rereading does work when you know your focus, but you should support this exam preparation technique by another efficient method known as self-testing. There are two benefits of this technique:
- In comparison to rereading, this method stands for the accurate evaluation of the learned material and if the student should keep on studying.
- It is an excellent method to cement exam study material into memory. It works even more effective than the time you dedicate to perusing the notes.
Self-testing may also refer to identifying personal skills and knowledge before choosing the right major.
If you exclude breaks from your exam preparation plan, you risk losing all your energy before the exam date. Besides, sleepless nights lead to problems with memory and thinking. Thus, you should not joke with this important factor.
Students need breaks, but they worry that they won’t have a desire to continue studying once they have a rest. That is why you should take short breaks that do not involve playing computer games or watching your favourite TV shows. It really distracts you from your goal. It is better to have a meal or walk around and breathe fresh air. Don’t be afraid to gain extra weight – brain activity ‘eats’ a lot of calories. Once you go outside, your brain is filled with the air. It helps to work on your exam materials.
Pausing During the Reading
From time to time, you need to stop reading your exam study material and think for a while whether the text makes sense to you. You can break a large piece into several sections trying to focus on the main idea of each. The questions like, “What was it all about?” prompt thinking and educational process.
Spread out Exam Study Sessions
Stop cramming! It makes no sense in most cases. Human’s brain can memorise information better when it is divided into parts. The memory is more enduring when students review the exam study sources days or weeks apart. That is why tutors give regular quizzes and small in-class tests that cover sections you explored early.
Make a Plan
No exam preparation is possible without a good plan. You should estimate how much time you need to remember the study material as well as how much time you will need to answer all exam questions. This knowledge will be helpful during the exam. You will then be able to allocate time resources wisely to catch up on all assignments. Check these tips on developing a good study plan:
- Write down all the topics on the subject you have studied.
- Know your strengths and weaknesses. It will help to understand what topics you must focus on during your preparation. Divide all topics into three sections:
Thins you don’t know at all. Perhaps, you were sick during that and did not manage to read the notes of your peers or your textbook.
Subjects been learning last night, so you have a general but could miss some important .
Things you remember perfectly, so there is a small or no need to cover them again.
- Search for the examples of practice and learning materials you have to review and read them by staying focused on the most important ideas and great examples. Don’t forget about reviewing the tutorial questions as well!
Take Care of Your Study Space
Prepare your study space by removing distracting factors such as your player (unless it contains audio materials to study), smartphone, video games, magazines, etc. You can leave classical music on as the scientists prove that it helps our brains to work properly and quickly.
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