I am preparing for higher kinds of exam ,and i am not able to study for more hours , so help me out?
Thank you for taking the time to write to me and I hope that I can help.
How well you perform in your exams relies not just upon how much you have studied but also, how well you are able to remember and recall the information that you have studied and apply it to an exam situation. Therefore, do not worry if you do not have additional time to study; make sure that when you are studying, you are able to give it your full concentration and attention. Studying too much or ‘cramming’ (last minute revision before an exam) overloads your brain and causes it to begin to close itself off to new information; meaning that you tend to forget the first things you have revised and only remember the most recent. What this means in practice is that you need to have a regular study routine but one that is not too intense or boring.
Here are some tips for making use of the time that you do have to get the most out of your studying:
1. Set up a study area – This can be in your room, in the dining room, wherever, but what is important is that it is quiet, you will not be disturbed and you have access to everything that you need. Having things like the TV or the radio on may distract you when you are trying to revise, similarly, so may having other people in the background.
2. Make time – Have a study routine but make sure that you allow yourself breaks away from studying and time to do something you enjoy. For example, it is not worthwhile coming home and spending six hours of studying and not having time for yourself as it is likely that you will forget most of the information you are trying to revise because you will become disinterested in what you are looking at. If, for 15 minutes per hour of studying, you can have a break (get a drink, go for a walk, just something different), this will refresh your brain and mean you are more likely to remember more.
3. Use ‘Flashcards’ (small cards that you can write on both sides) to help you test yourself. Write a potential question on one side and bullet points or the answer on the next. Ask yourself the question, answer it out loud and then check what is written on the back. This is a good way of testing if what you have read is memorable and it helps you to be able to apply the knowledge to a question.
4. Use colour – Use different colour ‘Post It’s, highlighters and paper to break up complex topics and subjects. This will help you to break up your studying into different areas and means you can test yourself with one area at a time.
5. Mix it up – If you are studying more than one subject or a topic that has a lot of different parts, try and change the topic that you study every night and rotate it. This will mean that you are not becoming bored or overwhelmed with one topic and by mixing it up you are more likely to remember different things.
6. Relax – Find some time to relax and wind down. This may seem odd when your primary concern is to study and to do well, but you can only remember so much information and it is important that you allow that information to be able to ‘sink’ in. This cements the information in your brain and means you are more likely to be able to recall it when needed. If you do something that you like doing and give yourself a break then it switches your brain’s focus from being tense and stressed to relaxed and engaged which is beneficial for retaining information.
7. Exercise – Exercise released endorphins which make us happy, improve our mood and help us to gain focus and perspective. It is a good way to de-stress after studying and a good way to get aggression out.
8. Sleep – Aim for around 7.5 to 8 hours of sleep a day. Any less then you will feel exhausted and are likely to under perform. Too much and it will have the same effect but you will feel even more tired.
9. Reward – Reward yourself when you have spent a long time studying and before and after the exam. It is important that you recognise your own hard work and reward this. This will get you into a positive reward cycle that means that you will continually try your best.
10. Accept – Once you have finished the exam or submitted that course work, it is done and there is nothing you can do about it until you get a grade. You are never going to know or remember everything so all you can do is try your best. As long as you do that, you should be proud of whatever result(s) you get.
If you follow the tips above, it should not matter that you do not have a lot of time to study as you will be making the most of the time that you DO have; which will hopefully mean that you do well with your studies.
I hope that helps.