By L. Doherty
Whether its Math, English or Biology, studying for your mocks can be quite hard and stressful. However, with a bit of organization, effort and balance passing and achieving excellent grades in your exams can be relatively easy! Below are a some tips and tricks, which I consider to be extremely valuable in order to help you when revising for the mocks or any exam in general.
This might seem quite obvious, however, it is always good to keep both your strengths and weaknesses in mind. If you are short on time for revision, make sure to focus on the topics and/or subjects that you have more difficulty in. You will only be wasting time if prioritizing subjects that you find easy, instead of challenging yourself and making sure you are well rounded in all topics.
2. GET DOWN TO IT AND STUDY ON A DAILY BASIS
You have to start revising at some point and doing it sooner rather than later is the best option! If you force yourself to study a little bit everyday, you will inevitably establish a routine in which you are so used to, that you won’t even notice the extra effort you are putting in. By using this method your brain will be exposed to knowledge all the time and, consequently, will keeping your brain constantly active and less tired. Even if you decide to study for a short period of time or choose to focus on only one topic, make sure to plan and achieve your aims each and every day.
3. BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF
Instead of wasting your time in creating a super detailed and colorful revision schedule for your exams, use it wisely by actually revising. Moreover, completing past papers with the mark scheme right in front of you is also not revising. If you find yourself procrastinating in your study space, change it as it will be, without doubt, very helpful. Make sure not to delude yourself by setting unrealistic goals, which will only make you more stressed and unnecessarily worried.
4. MAKE REVISION ACTIVE
A huge part of revising is remembering information and benefiting from using different methods to do so. Mind maps are a great option for subjects like English and Portuguese, which is important to recall the main themes, characters and quotes. Flashcards are also extremely useful for subjects that require a lot of specific detail and definitions, such as Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Mnemonics are also a great way to memorize information, since you can create funny ones, which will forever stick in your minds. Finally, teaching a friend or a family member about a specific topic or event (e.g.: in History) is an incredible manner to make your revision active. Also, it tests whether you know all of the information needed for your test or not.
5. DON’T OVERDO IT – BALANCE IS KEY
It can be exhausting to study for hours and not have breaks at all; therefore, I strongly recommend you to still exercise, go out with your friends and eat healthy during this period of time. Relaxing and relieving stress is essential since it helps you to feel refreshed. Balancing studying with exerting helps you sleep better and will make your next day even more productive. Remember to reward yourself for all of your hard work by going out and having fun. But it is always important to have discipline and prioritize your studying schedule over entertainment.
6. COMPETE PLENTY OF PAST PAPERS
Examiners are not the most creative individuals in this world, thus, once you have done three or four past papers on the same subject, chances are that you will be more confident and familiarized with the questions. Probably similar questions will come up in your mock exam, since teachers normally create tests based on past papers or choose a specific one to assess you. Additionally, have a look at specimen papers, they are often used by teachers as mocks!
7. MAKE MISTAKES NOW RATHER THAN DURING THE OFFICAL EXAM
Remember, that the mocks’ sole purpose is to highlight your weaknesses and strengths in order to consolidate your goals for your real IGCSEs. Use this time wisely to improve on the subjects you have more difficulty in and gain confidence on your official exams. Do not panic, after all, it is the first time you are taking an exam, which consist of three years of content.
Hopefully these tips were helpful and will be taken into consideration. It is always great to explore a variety of studying methods in order to make the most out of your revision sessions. Don’t forget to think positive and remain calm; the mock exams are here to help prepare you to attain astonishing results in the real IGCSE. You got this!