Facilitator: Ruth Storey, Mentor Project Manager LOOK UK
Featuring: LOOK mentors Kim, Alice, Kalid and Charlotte.
Last year we brought together four of our fab mentors to discuss their revision techniques and top tips for GCSE and A-Level exams.
Our revision Q&A discusses different top tips depending on your VI needs, including learning aids, Braille use and voice records for revision planning.
The LOOK team delves into the importance of time planning, committing information to memory and dealing with the mental load of exam preparation.
The discussion will be useful for anyone planning their revision for exams and we thank our mentors Kim, Alice, Khalid and Charlotte again for taking part in this conversation with Mentor Project Manager Ruth Storey.
You can listen to the original session, here:
LOOKs Revision Top Tips
Top Tips for Visual Learners
- Manage your energy so that you don’t find your eyes get tired.
- Use your class notes, do not underestimate how useful these are. The class notes will help you learn as you are going along, and you can read them week after week.
- Keep on top of your filing. Name documents properly so that you can find them quickly.
- Do as much as you can in little chunks because it does pay.
- It can help to have your notes in colour.
- Make up sayings in your head to help remember things e.g. maths formulas.
- It is helpful to know ahead of time what is on the syllabus so that you know what is coming up. You can then put different subject topics in different colours so that they are easier to find when revising.
Revision Tips for Braille Users
- When writing maths formulas put them on separate sheets and make sure that your braille on the top of each sheet what that formula is for.
- Make sure that everything is filed away correctly so that you can find things quickly. This could be on your braille notes or in hard copy braille.
- You can make braille flashcards with nuggets of information that you can expand on during the exam or to help you remember.
- Make sure if you have diagrams in your revision notes that they include descriptions.
Top tips for everyone
- BBC bitesize is an accessible revision resource.
- YouTube has helpful videos on revision.
- If you are struggling to take notes and you do not have access to a note taker, then another option is to record your lessons on a Dictaphone.
- Some past papers can be found online and downloaded as a PDF and then can be read on a braille note or iPad.
Top tips for time planning
- It’s important to ask for extra time prior to doing your exams if needed.
- Start your revision early.
- Revise little and often.
- Make time for revision but also make time for yourself to relax.
- Have a strategy of what you are going to do in your revision session, revise to learn something specific, don’t revise just so that you can say that you have done some revision – If you have a strategy, you can achieve more in a shorter time.
- Instead of having a 5-hour revision session break it down into 45-minute intervals.
- Prioritise the subjects that you struggle with so that you spend more time on those.
Top tips for remembering things
- With maths formulas try to turn them into a song or poem so that it sticks in your head.
- If you are worried about remembering a specific piece of information like a maths formula revise it just before you go into your exam then it is fresh in your head. When you then go into your exam write it down or ask your scribe to write it down for you then if it comes up you don’t have to worry about remembering it.
- If you find you are in an exam and you can’t remember every detail of the answer don’t worry you can move on and come back to it or note down the details that you do remember because you might score more points.
- Treat your brain like a muscle. You can’t expect to remember everything the week before an exam, but if you build your memory up over time by using repetition you will find that you remember things better and it will be less stressful by the time you hit your exams.
During your exams
- Make sure you get the extra time you need during your exams.
- Make sure you get enough sleep.
- Make sure you are eating healthily.
- Make time for exercise – Go for a walk to clear your mind.
- Be kind to yourself – don’t put too much pressure on yourself, you know more than you think!
- Make time to do things that you love before and between your exams.
- Once you are in the exam room it won’t be as bad as you think it’s going to be.
- Remember you do not have to do the exam questions in the correct order, do the longer questions that will get you more marks first, answer the questions you know and then finish with lower marked questions.
- It is not the end of the world if you do not pass or don’t do as well as expected as you can always retake exams.