Exams don't have to be scary or stressful. With the right approach, you can prepare for your exams and have ample time to revise. We've got some useful and easy tips to prepare for all kinds of examinations and clear them with ease.
The word exam is enough to stress us out. There is so much to study and so little time. The D-day descends upon us even before we know it. Many students feel stressed and panic when exam time is near. We know the holidays follow afterward (and it is assuring), but the hurdle of the exam seems like a huge rock in the middle of the road.
There’s no need to worry about the exam if you plan your approach right. You might have heard this often, and we’ll tell you again. Preparing for exams doesn’t have to mess up your schedule. You aren’t required to shut off from the world or stay away from your favorite shows and games. You only have to manage your time and maybe cut down the time spent on other activities.
So, how to study for final exams? Are there any tips for how to prepare for your exams?
You bet! We have many tips to help you plan your time and studies for the exams. These tips can be easily followed too. Breathe in, breathe out, and stay calm. Now, read through our list and start following them. Let’s make it easy to study for exams and pass with flying colors.
Tips on How to Prepare for Your Exams
We did our best to make our guide as practical and adaptable as possible.
Start Early to Have Enough Time
This is the trickiest tip to implement, but it is a must if you want to finish revising the entire syllabus on time.
The sooner you start, the slower you can go. Even if you thrive as a last-minute reader, don’t delay things until the night before the exam. Start at least a month before the first exam begins. And if the exam timetable is released earlier, start planning and organizing on the same day. Remember that starting early also allows you to take a day off in between. You won’t feel compelled to read just because you have no choice.
Moreover, when you start early, you have extra time to understand a difficult topic and ask someone to help you with it.
It refers to organizing a lot of things. This involves some planning, so take a pen and paper or open notes on your phone and make a list of things to do.
If you are already into lists, you know the advantage of having a checklist and the satisfaction of ticking an item off it. Start by organizing your study area. Clean your room and study table. Leave windows and doors open to let in the fresh air.
Place the study material on the table according to the subjects and exam dates. Anytime you want to refer to something or cross-check with a textbook, ensure it can be easily found. Searching for the copy will affect your reading. Keep your study material accessible to avoid delays.
Next, depending on the examination schedule, you can start studying in the same order or go in reverse so that by the time you finish revising the last subject on your list, it’ll be time to attend the exam for the same one.
Mix Up Techniques/ Methods
You don’t have to follow only a single study method. While it is important to study in a way that works for you, it’s also okay to try other techniques. When students ask how to prepare for exams, they get multiple answers.
Some swear by studying early in the morning. Some prefer to read late into the night. Others like to study during quiet afternoons. Go with the timing that allows you to concentrate on what you are studying.
Should you listen to music when studying? Should you turn off your mobile phones when preparing for exams? Will it help if you write down everything?
It depends on you. But yes, it is better to minimize distractions. Close the door to avoid sounds or family members talking to you at random. Keep the phone in silent mode and check for messages during breaks. Making notes is also helpful (more on this later).
Goals are motivating factors. Setting mini-goals to finish the revisions will help you achieve the results. For example, set a goal for the session that you will complete studying a topic thoroughly. Don’t end the session until you do so. Then take a break to relax before starting the next session.
Remember the previous point about lists. You get to strike off one item from that list when you achieve a goal. Sounds cool, right? Just don’t become overambitious and set goals beyond your limit. These will be hard to achieve and demotivating. You might lose interest in preparing for the exams. Don’t compare your study techniques and goals with others. We are working with our limitations, and that’s fine.
Note-making is always helpful as it allows you to concentrate on the topic. However, you do not need to copy everything from the books. The purpose of preparing notes is to get the gist of important points the instant you look at the copy. How you make notes is your choice.
Some write down pointers. Some draw flowcharts and diagrams. Some like to mark important points with a highlighter and take pictures. Do what works for you. This way, you can skim through the notes when traveling to the exam center or right before the exam starts and memorize crucial points for one last time. You don’t have to search through textbooks and study material when there’s no time.
Use Self-Assessment Tools
Studying, revising, and making notes are one part of the preparation process. Another important aspect is self-assessment. Thanks to technology, there’s an easy way to do that. AI-based question paper generator looks like PrepAI can help you create test papers and answers them too.
You aren’t required to spend any more time preparing the question paper. Just log into your PrepAI account, enter the input data, edit the test paper, and save it. The best part is that the AI question generator accepts multiple input formats. You can copy-paste the text, upload documents, or share links to Wiki pages and YouTube videos. The data from the source will be converted into different questions. If you are reading from ebooks, you can copy the content to PrepAI or convert the ebook into a Word/ PDF file and upload it directly.
Next, choose the difficulty level and the type of questions (MCQs, fill-ups, descriptive, etc.), depending on the final exam format. You can edit the questions and add/ delete more questions. Use previous exam papers to create a test for yourself. Save the version you created in PrepAI and export it as a Word document or a PDF file. Print it and start answering the questions as you would do in the exam.
Once done, you can compare the answers with the ones shared by the tool. Simple and effective, right? Therefore, there is no reason to rely on anyone else and can still assess your knowledge.
Take Care of your Health
How will you prepare for qualifying exams if you are not healthy or fit? Students tend to fall sick before or during exams. It’s mainly due to stress, excessive focus on the exam, and not enough care for their personal health. Make sure you stay healthy and don’t let stress affect you. Your daily schedule shouldn’t be so tight that you can’t eat, rest, or sleep.
- Take adequate breaks
- Drink water regularly to stay hydrated
- Go to sleep on time
- Get 8 hours of sleep at night
- Stop studying when you have a headache or body pains
- Go for short walks to get enough exercise
Understand the Exam
If it’s the year-end exam, you’ll mostly be aware of the formatting, duration, etc. But if it’s a competitive exam or something you haven’t attempted before, you need to know more about it. Look for the exam pattern, the types of questions, the segregation of marks, and the duration. Download or buy old test papers and solve them.
This will make you familiar with the test pattern and give you confidence that you can finish the exam on time. With regular practice, you will become more familiar with the format and scoring.
Discuss the Concepts
Studying on your own is a good choice but so is discussing it with friends. We are talking about the famous group studies except that here, you and your friends actually study instead of getting distracted.
Discussing difficult concepts with friends will bring a sense of clarity. You’ll see more perspectives on the same topic and find it easier to understand the intent or theme. You can also explain the concepts to others in your family.
Talking aloud and explaining things will raise doubts and clear them too. It’s no joke that many students swear they understand better when a friend explains a difficult topic.
Prepare for the Exam Day
Be fully ready for the exam day a couple of days before the schedule. Make sure you have the necessary IDs and certificates you need to carry to the exam center. Take stock of your stationery if it’s a descriptive written exam. It doesn’t look good to ask strangers to loan a pen or pencil during the exam.
Pick a dress that makes you comfortable. Consider the season and weather too. If the exam center is not your school/ college, find out the exact location of the building. You can also visit it a week before the exam to find alternate routes. Plan transportation and determine how long it takes to reach the center. That will tell you when you need to start at home so reach the destination on time or a bit earlier.
Talk to Your Mentor
It’s natural to feel anxious as the examination dates get closer. If you are feeling too tense to even concentrate on your studies, it’s time to talk to someone. Who is the person you feel most comfortable talking to? Find someone preferably older and experienced in life, and who has already gone through such situations.
The smartest thing to do is talk to your favorite teacher/ lecturer. Every student has that one favorite teacher they admire and can share their fears without worry. Contact them and ask for advice. Or just share your anxiety with them. They’ll help you calm down.
No Post-Exam Evaluations
There’s one thing you shouldn’t do after the exam. No comparing answers of discussing what you’ve written. No autopsy of the exam paper and your answers. It will stress you so much that you can’t focus on other exams.
It’s too late to do anything once you’ve submitted the answer sheet. Let it go and start preparing for the next exam. After the exam, take some time to unwind and recoup, and then get back to studying.
It’s neither impossible nor overwhelming once you know how to prepare for comprehensive exams. Examinations are a part of student life (despite the changing scenario), and with proper preparation, you can stay in control of the situation throughout.
Plan, execute, self-assess, correct, revise, prepare, and present. One step at a time, and you’ll make it to the finish line with ease. Don’t forget to create your account to use PrepAI for self-assessments. Good luck!