Wonder how to maximize learning from revision? Then keep reading and discover the revision strategies that work!
Sticky notes, highlighter pens, revision charts are among the most popular methods to prepare for classes and exams. However, you need to choose the technique that suits you and your personal needs. The strategies below are designed to help you ensure that the necessary information stays in your mind.
Make a Revision Plan
It is easy to become overwhelmed by the task and procrastinate. Making a realistic study plan will allow to control your revision session, reduce anxiety and be more efficient with your time.
- Find out what you need to know, gather requirements and helpful information about what to expect.
- Use past exam papers to direct your study. They will allow you to find out the common structure of a test and give you an idea of topics that should be revised.
- Check your notes to predict possible questions.
Create a study timetable with that information in mind. Avoid devoting too much time to one particular topic – you need to revise a great amount of information, so don’t set impossible goals for yourself.
Cramming saves the information in your short-term memory. That’s why material reviewed in cramming sessions is not learned. Usually, the information is impossible to recall after one or two days, so you cheat yourself relying on cramming.
Several reviews are more effective than one long study session. Try to schedule a few revisions of the material. You will remember more information if you go through it for a few times.
Organize Notes into Topics
It is much easier to remember details when they are organized into small sections. Create a list of areas you should revise in each discipline and write headings and sub-headings for each topic. This division will help you easily find notes that relate to the specific subject area.
Write comments and underline the main idea of each section in order to emphasize the most important information. Pay particular attention to these areas when revising the material.
Try Various Methods
You need to revise the information actively, so here are some great techniques to use while revising material:
- Write summaries – create summaries for each topic, number them to find necessary information more quickly when needed. Revise these summaries before exams to recall facts and details on every topic.
- Create diagrams – information presented with the help of mind maps and flow charts is easier to recall. You just need to look at them to stimulate the memory. Use different colors, highlighter pens, whatever works for you to memorize the material.
- Use audio – make recordings of your summaries, key ideas, terms, prepared answers for different questions and all other important information. You can listen to these recordings while walking, shopping or on your way to class.
- Make flash cards – use cards with the topic on the one side and the material to be recalled on another. Look at the topic, practice answering the question, then look on the back to check your answer. Flash cards can be used to remembering formulas, facts, terms, quotes, numbers, etc.
Reduce Anxiety and Stay Motivated
Too much anxiety and stress will negatively affect your performance during the revision sessions. It is important to stay motivated to make the whole process of revision less daunting. Make sure you:
- Get enough sleep
- Eat healthy food and drink much water
- Find time to exercise between the sessions
- Take breaks when you lose concentration or are tired
- Reward yourself for good progress (make a cup of tea, watch your favorite TV show, eat a piece of cheesecake, etc.)
Remember that revision should not be the last-minute attempt to learn the material for the last six months. It is aimed at recalling the information you have already studied. Don’t forget to tick off the topics on your revision timetable to see your regular progress. You can also revise with a friend or a study group to share knowledge and to practice answering the questions.
Revise all year round and be successful!