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The Best Study Tips To Help You Ace Exams


A girl in front of a chalk board knowing she aced her exam

Exams—they can stress out even the most organized of students. But they don’t have to. With a little preparation, even the most scatterbrained student can ace exams. The trick is to start early. That’s why we are talking exams NOW.

The secret to top-notch exam prep?

START EARLY!

These are the top ten things that you need to know to ace exams!

1. Give yourself plenty of time. 
Cramming doesn’t work. It just doesn’t. When you start to study weeks ahead, you have plenty of time to read everything. It also gives you time to ask questions about anything you don’t fully understand.

2. Use an Agenda.
 Write your study time in your agenda, even if it’s only 20 minutes a night. An agenda is one of the best organizational tools you have to help you prepare for your exams.

3. Set up a study stadium.
 Okay, it doesn’t have to be an actual stadium—just an area where you can leave your notes, your pencils, and your dictionary. A place where you are comfortable and where there is little distraction—that means no TV or blaring music!

4. Look at the big picture. 
How many pages in total do you have to study? How much time? If you have 50 pages to cover in 10 weeks, then that is only 1 page a night on weekdays, with weekends off. That’s not so bad! You can even write down what pages to study on what night.

5. Study a little bit every night.
 When you start early enough you can easily avoid the stress and anxiety of pulling an all-nighter. And, you can move at a steadier pace—20 minutes a night is easier to handle than 7 hours the night before. By the week before the exam you’ll have read everything at least once and you’ll be prepared!

6. Make your own notes. 
Look at the chapter or unit or section. What are the titles, heading and subheadings? Are there any bolded words? Write these down. These are key words, and they are great indicators to help you know what the material is about.

7. Put it in your own words. 
This is known a paraphrasing and it’s a great technique to help you really understand the material. Memorization and rote repetition? That’s for robots! You need to understand the material to succeed!

8. Cover, recite and check. 
But how do you paraphrase? It’s as easy as reading over a page, a paragraph, or a sentence, then covering it up, and saying it back in your own words!

9. Don’t study the stuff you know well. 
Start with the most challenging sections and move on from there. There is no point studying material that you are confident you know. A quick review to make sure you remember everything is enough.

10. Make classroom time active learning time.
 The best study tip is one that doesn’t even involve studying, but happens way before studying—in the classroom. The secret to easy studying is to be an active learner in the classroom. Raise your hand. Ask questions. Participate in discussions. Don’t just sit and wait for the teacher to teach you, get involved in learning!

The more responsibility you take for your education, the easier studying (and learning) will be!

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