Exams are coming and we’re as nervous as you are! Don’t worry, help is at hand…
The unCOVered team decided to take this opportunity to pass on some of the revision tips that we found most helpful when revising for our A-levels:
#1 – Start Early
Don’t leave it to the last minute. The earlier you can start revising the less pressure there is on you to fit it all in. Allowing plenty of time also means that revision doesn’t have to consume your life. You’ll still have plenty of time to fit in all the other things you enjoy.
#2 – Plenty of Breaks
Taking regular breaks will help to split up the day for you, and is also proven to improve concentration. The first thing I would do before I started revising on any given day would be to draw up a daily schedule. What do you want to achieve today and how long do you need to do it? Be realistic here. You can’t revise a whole subject in one day; decide what topics you want to cover – prioritise the ones you know the least about. Give yourself a 5-10 minute break every hour and make sure you have at least 30-60 minutes for lunch.
#3 – Environment
You’re not going to work effectively in bed, no matter how comfortable you are. Clear yourself some space on your desk, and set up a revision station. If you don’t have access to a desk at home, check out your local library’s opening hours and find yourself a regular spot. Turn your phone off and only listen to relaxing music, no heavy bass or fast rap – staying ‘distraction free’ is the key here.
#4 – Friends
It can be very motivating to revise with friends, you can test each other and spur each other on. Be careful though, be sure that you’re not just letting everyone else answer for you. The point of revision is to learn. Likewise, if your friends are being more of a hindrance than a help, be prepared to speak up or find a new set of revision buddies.
#5 – Balance
All work and no play…well you know. If you plan your revision out well enough you have no reason to miss out on the things you enjoy. Revising 24/7 is not going to be effective, you’ll burn yourself out before you know it which means you’ll get extra stressed. You could very well forget everything you’ve learnt. Aim to get up early in the morning and get your allocated revision time done for the day. Then the rest of the afternoon or evening is yours to do whatever you want!
#6 – Flash Cards
People learn differently but flash cards are great for splitting large amounts of information into easily digestible and memorable chunks. You can write down key facts, notes, equations, graphs or diagrams to help you remember important information. You can then flick through these whenever your have a spare few minutes, or use them to get others to test you.
#7 – Switch Off
This goes back to your working environment – turn your phone off or put it into aeroplane mode. It’s extremely easy to be distracted when your phone is constantly buzzing. You can turn it back on during your breaks if you must, but nothing so important that it can’t wait for an hour or two whilst you get on with your revision.
#8 – Mind Maps
Mind maps are brilliant. You can cram tonnes of information onto one page, and they are especially good for identifying how different topics or ideas can fit together, making them easier to remember. They can be as colourful (or not) as you like, and you can pretty much do a mind map for anything from Physics to Art History to Sociology!
#9 – Post-it’s
Again – like flash cards these force you to break down large bits of information into small manageable chunks, and best of all – you can stick them everywhere! If you’ve got post-it notes on the fridge then every time you reach for the milk you’re going to be reminded of that equation you’re trying to memorise. Remember to place them around your mirror too, you’re guaranteed to look there every day!
#10 – Sleep
It can be really easy to stay up late revising, we’ve all been there. But it’s really not the best way to do it. You’re going to find it far easier to learn and memorise everything if you’re awake and alert after a good nights sleep. Making sure your body and brain are both well rested ahead of A-level exams is really important for both you and your results!
So there you have it, our top revision tips to get you through your A-Levels! It’s hard work, but it’s worth it, and hopefully we’ve shown you that it doesn’t have to be as challenging as it may seem.