Study tips for exam season

Preparing for exams can be very stressful, but having the right strategies in place to help you revise can make things a lot easier. Emily shares her top study tips for acing exams.


As the dreaded exam season falls upon us students, with deadlines now lurking at every corner, here’s 4 quick study tips which I have learnt during my time at University:

  • Have a phone detox

Social media is addictive and my biggest nemesis when it comes to studying. It sounds logical but turning your phone off or perhaps your laptop, will stop you ‘accidentally’ spending 4 hours scrolling the internet and achieving nothing.

Speaking personally, having electronics at bay means I also get complete silence. However, some find music beneficial as it can aid endurance in long study sessions. If music is something which helps you, perhaps put your phone on airplane mode even while you listen so that notifications don’t let you procrastinate. Apps such as Focus Keeper can time you to keep your productivity high, that way you can reward yourself with a short phone binge before returning to studying.

  • Tidy those table-tops

A tidy workspace often means a tidy mind, so empty that desk before you crack on. It doesn’t need to look Instagram worthy, but it certainly helps with focus and in making you feel more in control of your work.

  • Stay social

There’s no need to limit yourself to the library 24/7; the stress of studying often can take its toll so it’s important to find some time to get active and spend time with your friends to curb the strain. Even dedicating a mere hour per day to mix with friends is hugely beneficial: alleviating the pressure and looking after your wellbeing will help you stay motivated.

I prefer to work alone, as I am a known distractor for my friends, but short breaks to chat also means I can discuss any queries I have with my studies too. Besides, barricading yourself in your study space will become monotonous so make the most of the green, sunny space campus has on offer in your breaks.

(Note: Research suggests studying the same stuff in a different place every day makes us less likely to forget that information!)

  • Stop that cramming!

As someone who is far too experienced when it comes to cramming revision, I advise that you create a timetable to make sure that this doesn’t happen. Simple as it sounds, breaking up your day with different tasks and smaller goals in one sitting will be more effective and productive. Not only is cramming super stressful, but you are less likely to retain the topic.

Tackling your work head on as early as possible, no matter how ugly that topic may be, will be worth it in the long run. Additionally, studying a bunch of different topics throughout the day has been shown to help prepare us to use the right strategy for finding the solution to a problem under pressure.

We each have our own study habits and though I have shared my thoughts, check out the Life Tools talks on campus for extra information on increasing concentration, limiting procrastination and more. Good luck!

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