Giving your GCSE exams puts you under a lot of pressure, as these are one of the most significant exams in a student’s life. And with GCSE exams approaching, you need a solid revision strategy. GCSE exams take place at the end of the key stage four academic journey, and depending on the subjects, exam board, or school, the studies take place over 2 to 3 years.
When you have spent your precious 2 to 3 years preparing for GCSE exams, it doesn’t make sense to let your efforts go down the drain with poor revision.
Many things depend on your good GCSE grades, like your qualifications, the sixth form you go to, the universities you can apply to, your eligibility for a university course, your career prospects, etc. Thus, pretty much your chance at admission to the university of your dreams and creating a dream career depends on your GCSE results.
To ace your exams, you require a concrete revision strategy. Here are five revision tips to help you get A*s in your GCSE exam.
1. Use Online Resources
There are multiple online resources and tools you can use to study and revise effectively. You can sign up for an online revision course on one of many online studying platforms. You can even find GCSE tutors online. Tutors for GCSE who are available on such online platforms can provide you with the knowledge and guidance you need to ace your exams.
This is the best way to get one-to-one or in-person guidance without even leaving your house. The tutors can suggest you good revision strategies, clear up your concepts, answer queries you have, help you prepare efficiently, and much more.
You can also join a virtual study group. When you study together with your peers, it gives you motivation, and you don’t feel alone in all this. Your classmates will have valuable revision advice to offer. Discussing with each other and testing each other with questions is the best way to revise concepts.
2. Study Past Papers
Studying and practicing past exam papers is a classic GCSE revision move, and it’s always beneficial.
The primary benefit is that when you look at several past papers, you will become completely familiar with the layout or pattern of the exams. Knowing how many multiple choice or open-ended questions will be on the exam is crucial so you can revise accordingly.
Another benefit is that you will become familiar with the wording of questions in the exams. This is probably the biggest advantage you can get from revising past papers. Sometimes the examiners ask things by using tricky words.
Most students skip questions in exams because they don’t understand the question. But the questions cover things you know already, just in some tricky way. You need to understand how the questions are worded, so you can decode them instantly instead of skipping questions.
By practicing past papers, you will learn how to manage time during your exam. Past papers show how much time is allotted to what type of questions so that you know how much time you need to give to each question to attempt all questions within time.
3. Make Revision Manageable
When you start revision, it’s natural for it to feel overwhelming. But don’t let it become a daunting task, otherwise, you will find it difficult even to start revising. Make it manageable. If a subject’s revision means covering up two years’ worth of syllabus, it will be too intimidating and seem like a big mountain of chapters and topics you need to revise. Break it into smaller chunks to make it manageable.
Divide your subjects into different sections with relevant topics or chapters, all grouped under one section. This way, you will easily revise all different sections with efficiency. Each section will look smaller, achievable, and manageable when you have 10 smaller sections to cover instead of a huge pile of revision material. You will revise all relevant topics in one go.
You cannot revise a whole subject in one sitting, but you can easily revise a section or two in one setting, which will have a psychological effect that you are making progress and not leaving revision of a subject in the middle. During the revision of individual sections, you will also realize where you stand in terms of preparation, which specific topics you need to give more time to that you are having difficulty remembering, etc.
4. Take Study Breaks
Revising doesn’t mean you have to get glued to your desk for hours and study without breaks. Taking breaks during the study is extremely crucial for effective learning.
The best revision strategy is to study for 30 minutes and then take a break for 10 minutes. Especially when you have a set target to revise for, say, two hours a day, break it down into four 30 minutes sessions with a 10-minute break in between.
Sitting for long hours and revising constantly decreases your productivity and learning capacity. On average, a human brain cannot constantly maintain focus for more than 45 minutes. Thus, taking breaks is an absolute must; otherwise, you will only lose your focus and waste time going back to paragraphs and reading them again and again without absorbing a word.
Do something active during your break, like stretching, walking around the room, or making and having a good cup of tea or coffee. That way, you will feel energetic, increase your attention span and absorb more information.
5. Understand Your Revision Style
There are many guides out there pointing out a perfect study and revision style. But the truth is, every student is different and has different capabilities. You are not bound to follow a specific way of revision that someone else outlines for you.
You must discover your own best way of revision and study. Some students retain information better when they write it down; others understand things more when they listen to them. Some people learn better when studying in a group, while others require a peaceful, separate environment to memorize things.
You might study better during night time while someone else might find mornings a better time to study. Thus, understand your revision and study style and act accordingly.
You can use flashcards for revising if you are a visual learner. If you prefer auditory ways of learning, listening to lectures is the best way to revise. If you understand more by reading or writing, then do so by reading your notes repeatedly or writing down everything you revise.
To ensure you get into your dream university, you must ace your GCSE exams. And a good revision plan will help you achieve good grades. Here are five revision tips to help you revise like a pro and nail your GCSE exams.