May 22, 2014, by khyx2lyn

Last Minute Tips… (Exams!)

The end of the academic year is just around the corner, and soon the senior students will be getting ready for their graduation, while the others prepare for their internships or holidays or a combination. This only means that it’s that time of the year (EXAMS!) where the night owls in us are awakened, and students are seen studying and revising at all corners of the university grounds.

With only one or two weeks for revision, one question that commonly pops into the minds of students is “How should I prepare for the exams?” Classes and tutorials were attended, coursework have been submitted, lecture notes have been printed and organized, so what’s next?

In the 11th hour, here are some tips or suggestions for students to further prepare themselves for the finals:

1.       Take care of yourself.

Most of the time during exam periods, we tend to sacrifice our basic needs in order to cramp in as much study hours as possible. While it seems crucial that we can’t spend another minute on anything else but our lecture notes or books, health is still a crucial factor to one’s exam performance. Exercise by taking a 30-minute walk around the lake, eat and drink sensibly, spend some quality time on yourself, and make sure you have adequate sleep. Taking some time off for these simple pleasures ensure that our minds and bodies are working effectively during exam period, hence positively impact our performance.

2.       Don’t study in crowded places.

Studying in a quiet and remote place where you can focus on your studies without distraction is the best option. Group discussions are a good idea, but if you are aware that the meeting will end up with spending more time on catching up and socializing, then studying on your own would be a better option.

3.       Put yourself in the shoes’ of the lecturer.

As you revise, ask yourself what kind of questions would Dr. Y ask in the exam? What are the key points in the module? What chapters were highlighted time and time again? What key ideas are representative of the module? By reviewing questions like these, it would help narrow down the topics and prepare for the sort of questions that might come up in the exam.

4.       Relax right before an exam.

Intense cramming an hour or so before the exam is shown to be ineffective, instead try spreading out your studies. Cramming only increases our anxiety and we’ll start believing that this last minute behaviour will help us do better on the exam. Try taking a walk or listen to some music to relax the mind in the last hour or so before an exam.

5.       What’s done is done.

Once you’ve handed in the exam papers, let it go, instead start focusing on preparing for the next exam or get some rest or have some fun! There’s nothing you can change once the exam is done.

With that, I wish everyone the best of luck for their exams!

And have a great summer break!

Yvonne Teoh
(PhD Student, School of Psychology, UNMC)

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