Exam preparation is most effective when work is revised shortly after learning new information. Build revision into your schedule and your exam study sessions will be more relaxed and satisfying.
Before you start studying for the exam, find out:
Planning is essential to maximise your time. Draw up a realistic revision timetable for all your subjects including exam start and end dates. Include essential non-study commitments (work, sport, etc.).
Put your plan down on paper. Download one of the study plan templates (below).
What you do in your revision periods will depend on what sort of exam you have. Will you have to do much writing, or mostly memorising? Whichever exam type you encounter, here are some general tips:
Traditional: find out the exact questions only when you read the exam paper
Open book: find out exact questions only when you read the exam paper, but you can take reference materials into the exam room
Open question: find out exam question/s some time before the exam so you have time to prepare your answer, but cannot take reference materials into exam room
Essay exam plan:
Answer correctly by being able to recognise the most appropriate response from a number of options.
Take special note of phrasing, such as:
Use a process of elimination. Ask yourself the following questions:
There are two types of short answer exams.
Factual: designed to test your memory. You might need to write one word, a phrase, a sentence or a paragraph. Factual questions often use the following instruction words:
Define, name, give, outline, identify, provide, list, state.
Interpretive: to test your ability to apply the concepts you have learnt. Interpretive questions often use the following instruction words:
Account for, comment on, compare, consider, contrast, describe, discuss, distinguish, elaborate on, explain, give reasons for, how is x different, illustrate, what do you understand by, support your answer.