Revising over the Christmas holidays is not always the most exciting thing to do. All you want to do is spend time with your family and your home friends, relax with films and eat lots of food! Unfortunately, the reality is that there is a pile of revision waiting for you, and you do want to do well in those exams. Everybody lacks a bit of motivation however, so don’t worry -you’re not alone! So, how do people manage their revision?
I interviewed a fellow student, Kyle, about his revision strategy for these latest exams:
Me: How did you structure your revision?
Kyle: I made a revision plan, making sure that I had covered all the content before Christmas Day by writing out all my lecture notes. I then went over these notes in a more succinct manner, alongside tackling questions and the past paper.
Me: Did you find it hard to adjust from A level revision to university revision and exams?
Kyle: I struggled to structure my revision for my first year’s January exams. This was because in Biology, there are fewer past papers than what I was used to for GCSEs and A-levels. However, I learned from that and this year I made sure that I took full advantage of the extra questions that the lecturers uploaded onto the VLE. I didn’t only use those questions, I made revision cards from my lecture notes to make sure I had means to test myself on all aspects of the course and not only the questions that were provided that the lectures.
Me: Do you feel like there’s a good amount of practice questions available to aid your revision?
Kyle: It varies from module to module and the style of questions can change as well between modules. Some modules have a wide range of questions available on the VLE that get marked as soon as possible which allows you to then straight away spot your mistakes, if any, and then this can direct your revision and show which areas of the course you need to focus more on. In addition to this there are some longer questions where you have to write an answer that can range from 2 to 10 marks and these are normally found on the VLE as a word document with a separate document with the answers. I like these questions as they’re a good indication of how well you know the course and also what level of detail you need to go into to be awarded all the marks available.
Me: And finally Kyle, how did you celebrate the end of exams?
Kyle: “I was so happy when exams finished! I was free to relax and do whatever I wanted. At least, I was free for a weekend and then it was straight back to lectures! I managed to relax with my friends and in the evening of my last exam I got a Domino’s takeaway (like a proper student) and went to house party with my course mates. It was so much fun, as everyone was relaxed and actually talking about other things than exams (which had been the topic of the majority of our conversations for a solid month!).”
And there you are folks, that was a quick insight of what university exams and revision can be like, and some ideas to help you to revise. And also an idea of how you can celebrate, which is such a great feeling after you’ve put all that work in. So if you’re feeling tired and worried about the workload now at college or at university, remember there are lots of ways to organise your time and help you revise productively. And there can always be a classic pepperoni passion pizza (with the infamous garlic and herb dip) and an amazing evening with your friends waiting at the finishing line!