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Most students are dying to get the answer to the ultimate question – How do I get great exam results, without the added stress, and the long hours? It’s a tough question that has had students puzzled for years. How does one achieve optimal results without pushing one’s self over the edge?


One way to answer this question would be to approach your exam revision from an earlier date than you normally do. Starting revision quickly means that:

  • You won’t have to cram at the last minute.
  • A significant amount of exam stress will be lifted from your shoulders.
  • You can plan your revision better and won’t need to put in as much work hours per day as you would if you started last minute.

Another method I would recommend is to set yourself goals. Setting goals really helps to unmask the amount of work you need to do to achieve your targets. I would even go so far to suggest that many students often under-or-over-estimate the amount of work they need to do for their exams as they haven’t set themselves long or short-term goals to pace their work and understand their academic process.  Start by writing down your long-term goals, whether that be to ace your exams this year, or get into the university of your choice when you graduate secondary school. After setting yourself long-term goals, start focusing on the steps you need to take to achieve those goals. To create goals that work for you, remember to make them:

  • Precise
  • Attainable
  • Quantifiable
  • Practical
  • Time-bound

A great way to ensure better marks is to manage your time effectively. As a student, I’ve found it very easy to stray into procrastination and distraction, especially while writing essay assignments which is why I would recommend planning what you will do each day so that distraction is minimised. This way, you can provide yourself with set hours or time-blocks where you can focus on studying and feel satisfied with the amount of work you’ve cultivated without feeling guilty for flicking between Facebook and your assignment or revision only to find how little you’ve progressed with your work! Here are a few tips on how to manage your time efficiently:

  • Create a planned study/revision timetable for each class (but only dedicate a few hours to this, do not linger in the planning stages of your revision – it will just become another tool to procrastinate!)
  • Avoid social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter during your allocated study hours.
  • Try not to stress yourself out.
  • Find revision and study techniques that suit you. Some people prefer to revise with flashcards, others like to re-write lesson/lecture notes, do whatever makes you feel comfortable and confident!
  • Give yourself a break! Studying for long hours can (alongside losing the will to live) exhaust you. It’s better to take a short 30 to 60 minute break every couple of hours, than work continuously to the point where you can no longer take in what you’re revising.
  • Make notes in class that you can use to revise from.

The real key to minimising your work hours and achieving better grades is to begin revision early. Do not leave your studies or revision to the last minute, or on top of accumulating stress, your academic performance will most likely suffer! Time-keeping is the key to success, get a head’s start, and work at a pace that makes you feel positive. Good luck!






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