By Maha Usman
It’s that time of the year when you can’t sleep or eat because of the stress that exams bring to you. It’s okay buddy, it’s only natural.
The internet is a great place to make maximum use of scoring an A in all of your exams; there are plenty of videos and study material online which you can watch to understand the loopholes that might have bugged you in class.
This blog is dedicated to every student who’s struggling with grades. Our team sat together and discussed how our study routine used to be and how we managed to get a GPA above 3.5.
OUR FAVOURITE HOBBY! Jokes apart, if you’re planning a study routine for a few hours/ all-nighter, it is a MUST to get ample of sleep for you to function and understand what you’re studying. It is necessary for you to have a fresh mind, eat healthy( because junk food makes you sleepy), and hydrate yourself before you grab your books.
- Understand What You’re Studying, This is How
This top-scorer, all-rounder, oh-so-smart friend of mine tells me how he used to study; “I would translate everything to Urdu because our mind processes everything better when we read something in our mother language. It always helped me to understand things better and I’d be able to write them with more clarity as well”- Said the Amazing Shahnawaz.
- Make Summaries on Sticky Notes
Once you’re done with a concept/paragraph/page, take a sticky note and write a brief summary of what you gathered from that specific topic. Do it on every page and topic, this will not only help you understand the lesson better but would extremely beneficial when you’re skimming through the book in the morning.
- Read Out Loud
Reading out is a great technique to memorize something because you’re understanding more and listening to yourself. You could also practice reading out with a friend; Tell them to listen to you and raise questions as you study.
- Make Counter-Arguments
While you’re going through a topic, create doubts and question the loopholes in the text. Answer them yourself by studying the topic and include it in your answer sheet. This wouldn’t give the examiner a chance to question your argument.
E.g. Instead of saying Realism is an approach to the study and practice of international politics, you could say, Realism is an approach to the study and practice of international politics. It emphasizes the role of the nation-state and makes a broad assumption that all nation-states are motivated by national interests, or, at best, national interests disguised as moral concerns.
- Quiz Yourself
Always a smart idea to quiz yourself after every topic you go through. Not just that but also quiz yourself before going to sit in your exam. Always works!
- Use Youtube Video Tutorials
Watch videos on YouTube based on the same topic that you’re learning. While watching videos, aim to picture the concepts and elements in your head.
We came across this really cool technique in university and wikihow explains it so well:
Mnemonics are simply memorization techniques that can help you while you’re studying. You can use acronyms to help you, chaining ideas together, or keywords (especially helpful for languages).
Acronyms: this is basically a combination of letters, each of which stands for an idea that you will need to remember. For example, the FOIL method in algebra stands for First, Outer, Inner, Last, designating how you’re supposed to do an algebraic problem.
Chaining creates a story where each word or idea you have to remember cues the next idea that you have to remember.
Keywords: for each foreign word you have to remember, pick an English word that sounds like it. Then you’d visualize an image that has both the English word and the foreign word in it. For example “cabina” is the Spanish word for a phone booth. Imagine a cab trying to fit inside a phone booth. You’ll be able to recall the image, which will lead you to “cabina.”
- Mind Mapping: Before attempting the exam, make a rough mind map for every question and make bullet points of all the things you’re going to cover. This way you can easily go back to the pencil-written map if you forget something during the exam.