10 Tips to best prepare for your next Exam


6. Think right think about passing exam not just exams.

“I am so worried about my exam” That is one sentence every student tells me. My immediate response is, “So have you done anything for what you are worried?” Annnnnd…. silence….

This is exactly why you are worried. You are worried because you are not doing anything to compensate it. If you are worried about something and it is throwing you in depression zone then it means now is the time to give your best and start doing whatever you can. This is what struggle is. And if you are not doing it then blame yourself for being lazy. Because you should not be worried about exams then you should be worried about your laziness.

So what is the solution if you are feeling like this. When I ask my students why worried they say “I don’t know where to start as there is just so much to do”. Have you heard anyone crossing the line without running? No right? So solution is simple and don’t complicate it. Lay down your work, count your days, divide the work and as you do one part tick that out. Make a schedule and put it on the wall above desk where you study so that you can see it all the time and know what has been done and what is still to be done so you stay focused.

Give yourself set targets but don’t make it overly ambitious. If you need more time then cut down on your leisure activities and go for efficient learning techniques. And this is again where your notes will catalyze like nothing else. Close to exams you don’t have time to go back to your book and start reading it over again. It will definitely be a mountain to conquer as you will not only be without direction but also lack strategy to speed things up.

With short notes this not the case as you already know after writing that how much the content is and how much time will it take to cover. And the best part is, there are lot of things in the book that needs to be skipped as you need them only when learning for the first time. In notes you will already have the important stuff separated for later review.

Being nervous to certain extent is good but being overly nervous is bad. There are few students who are doing well, preparing the right way and still nervous for them I would say; nobody is going to give you death sentence if you won’t pass. Don’t make things difficult more than what they actually are.

Shred out any distractions or anything that makes you think about other things. I know the other things might also be important to you but at the moment the most important is your exam. As if you fail in it you will have then 2 jobs AGAIN!

7. Sleep and eat normal

Hardwork DOES NOT mean sleeping less. I don’t how students these days get an impression that late night studies are best or real studies can only be done in the night. I really don’t get the idea if you have wasted the day and studying in the night. Exceptions are there and only in exceptions it is justified to sacrifice your 7-8 hours sleep.

Your body and brain needs to be in optimum state while studying and your sleep disorders or eat epilepsy will cost you dearly.

You might find it boring that I am delving in psychology and biology more often in this article. By having nice sleep your muscles and neuron relax. It helps brain “repair neurons in some way. Technically sleep keep your memory cell from burning out. Just like electricity equipment if used for extended hours may have burnt capacitors and shortcuts. Think the same way with your brain. So before you hear your doctor prescribing rest let me suggest to have it as normal.

8. “Group study”

This is a tricky business. For some it worked and for some not at all. The reasons are simple and known. It works when each and every member of the group is devoted to studies and as there are more heads so more ideas, more questions and more answers. So more learning. However, it fails for the same reason too. Many heads, many distractions, many ways NOT to study.

So if you really are into group studies then it is not a one day effort. You will have to find the right people to get together and make a group. Or at least tame the ones around you to studies. Better is to surround yourself with those people who are studying the same thing as you are and are going to exams with you. Classmates are best for this to work.

But again these group is like a wrist watch where each member is a cog driving the other. If one fails or falls apart the whole group will go static.

To ensure such groups work best way is to have a good plan before meeting whereas meeting is time bound for an interval of not more than 2-3 hours. Longer you planned the gather more time you might end up wasting and gossiping. Keep the meetings short so that it remains purposeful. Pick a responsible group leader whom everyone has to obey regarding timings and planning. And to make it even more effective kick out the problem children. Yes it might cost you a “mate” but might save you an exam.

9. Practice in exam like environment challenge yourself before time.

So far all the above points were dealing with what you need to do well before exams. However, this story needs to end a good note and for that to happen those 3-4 hours are crucial in the exam hall. With every other thing done right if you fail to stand the pressure then whole effort is wasted.

The only possible way to avoid such a wreck is to mimic the exam before exam. This is what mock exams are for. If your institute is running mock exam sessions then sit them as if you are sitting real exam. Only then you will be able to gauge yourself better. Go through the experience before it is a reality so that you know the weakness you need to make up.

My advice is to never sit mock exams without preparation. These rehearsals are there to check how good your best is not how good your worst can be. Don’t go to your teacher to tell him, “I scored 40% with absolutely no preparation and with all the preparation I scored just 48%”. Dear if you were serious in rehearsal tests you must have scored 48% then and most probably passed the actual exam because by you know how weak your best is.

10. Leave the rest to ALLAH

Think only about controllable things. And stop worrying about uncontrollable and and leave all that for HIM to deal with as nothing is out of HIS control. So once you have every other step in place don’t forget to pray for your success. However it must not be only prayer with no hardwork to back it up. Divine help is available to those who help themselves.