Work smarter, not harder is a well used phrase, but what does it mean when it comes to study and exams? We’ve found some of the best student YouTube stars who generously share their secrets of study success and revision techniques with you, their fellow undergrads. Why not give their tips a try to see what works for you?
1. Memorise essay plans for exams – Ali Abdaal
Write and memorise essay plans for your exams. Focus on your introduction; this is your chance to signal to your examiner that you’re about to write an essay that’s well structured and answers the question with flair.
2. Focus on targets, not hours – Simon Clark
There’s an assumption revision must be horrible but it needn’t be that way if you pace yourself. Set yourself a target, achieve it, then get on with your day. Cramming in the library is one of the least productive ways of revising.
3. Use flashcards more effectively – Thomas Frank
Did you know that adding pictures to your flashcards will help you remember the information better? Scientists call this the ‘history picture superiority effect’. It works. Try it!
4. Don’t measure revision time, measure recall – Anas Nuur Ali
Measure progress correctly – by how much you’ve learned rather than the time you spent on revision. Sitting in the library all day may give you a feeling of accomplishment, but the only way to quantify how much you know is to test yourself.
5. Don’t let nerves get the better of you – Jack Edwards
Are you struggling with exam stress? Write your worries and concerns down, get them out of your system then rip the paper up or burn it. And remember, exams mean pressure. No matter how organised you are, it’s OK not to be OK all the time.
6. Don’t cram facts – gain understanding – Ela
Revise to understand, that way you’ll be able to use the information correctly in your exams. Revising with friends from your course helps you check your understanding.
7. Organise your revision with lists, topic by topic – Grace Fit UK
List everything you need to know in relation to each topic. Marking off your progress gives you the encouragement you need – if it works for you, make your handwritten notes look nice because it helps them sink in so you’ll remember the information under exam conditions.
8. Get yourself a ‘habit forming’ study location – Kaitlin Emma
Pick a regular place for doing your revision and stick to it. That way, when you enter the space, your head switches into learning mode. Are you a mind map person or a bullet point person? Finding out how you learn will help you optimise your productivity and performance.
9. Learn from your mistakes – Miss Varz
Read your coursework and check out your tutor’s notes so you know what you got right and what you got wrong. Understanding your mistakes properly will help deepen your knowledge of the subject. Your tutor is trying to point you in the right direction!
10. Past papers are the best form of revision – Ruby Granger
Past papers are the best form of revision. When you’ve completed one, make flash cards based on the topics that came up on the paper, noting the things you got wrong so you’ll remember next time.
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