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How to prepare for exams: top tips from our Student Ambassadors

07 May 2019 - Becky Robertson

Exams. They might not be everyone’s favourite activity, but exams are an important part of college and university life. Luckily for you, our Student Ambassadors, Mirsa, Kenny and Shifra, have shared their top tips for how to prepare for exams. So here it is: our handy exam survival guide!

Mirsa’s tips

Mirsa from Panama is studying a Foundation Certificate for Media and Communications at Bournemouth University International College.

How to prepare for exams

These are my top 3 tips for how to prepare for exams:

  1. Stop procrastinating:
    This is probably one of the hardest things to do because we have the internet, technology and social media available 24/7. You have to be determined and strong to ignore the things that distract you and start revising for your exams as soon as possible. Don’t leave it until the last minute!
  2. Create a study plan:
    Depending on how many exams and topics you have to cover, I recommend you make a schedule of what to study and at what times. Remember that studying is important, but you also have to take breaks. You need to find a balance that works for you.
  3. Write notes:
    I am a visual learner, so writing down the most important things helps me to remember facts and details. I recommend figuring out if you are a visual learner or an auditory one (someone who learns best by listening and speaking), so that you can study in the most effective and efficient way.

Kenny’s tips

Kenny from Nigeria is on the graduate program at Northeastern University, studying Project Management with concentration in Information Security Management.

Kenny, a Northeastern University student

He says:

It’s a great thing to work hard to prepare for your exams but an even better thing to work smart. I like to work smart and I have quite a few tips that I follow to be successful in my exams. However, I would stick to these 3 most important tips:

  1. Don’t leave studying to the last minute:
    For me, preparing for exams starts from the first week of the semester. I make a plan to study at least once a week and go over what I learned in the past week. This really helps me to deepen my understanding about past lessons and build on my knowledge in the coming weeks.
  2. Make good connections with your professors:
    I like to make good connections with my professors, because the more you speak to them, the easier it is for them to point you in the right direction with your studies. You want to ensure you’re right on track when studying, and having conversations with my professors really helps me.
  3. Learn by teaching others:
    Finally, helping classmates with their studies for me goes a long way. You help yourself more than you help the person you’re teaching if you master this craft. I retain more information when I teach others than when I just do solo study.

However, it’s important to understand that everybody absorbs and recalls information differently, so don’t feel discouraged if you don’t learn the same way as your peers. Find out which learning style works best for you and tailor your study needs accordingly.

Shifra’s tips

Shifra is a University of Liverpool student from Rwanda. She progressed to university after completing a Foundation Certificate for Business, Law and Social Sciences at University of Liverpool International College.

How to prepare for exams

Shifra says:

It is that time of the year when you are both excited and stressed; the exam period. You are excited because it means that you are probably about to have a holiday and stressed because there is a lot to do and you want to succeed. Here’s my advice for how to prepare for exams:

  1. Get plenty of rest:
    During exams, it’s important to get as much rest as you can so that you can restore your energy. Rest relaxes your brain and helps you feel refreshed for your revision and exams, helping you to remember more information.
  2. Start revision early:
    This helps you to avoid having loads of work to do at the last minute and being stressed that you can’t cover as much as you would have liked to. Starting revision earlier provides you with enough time to prepare but also to relax.
  3. Make a schedule and stick to it:
    You can make a mini timetable of what you want to cover in one day and make sure you stay concentrated enough to achieve what you put on the timetable. This helps you keep focussed and get work done effectively, which is not only useful for exams, but for but also for life in general.

So now you know how to prepare for exams, you’ll hopefully feel more relaxed and ready to succeed!

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