Being a well seasoned student, Lifestyle Editor Katie Ackerley has been through enough exam hell to know how you can lose your head in the face of exams and dissertations. Despite how good you are at ‘working under pressure,’ here are the top tips to keeping cool throughout exam period.
- Make a revision timetable and stick to it:We all know that making a revision timetable is a great form of procrastination but if you make one and actually stick to it, it can seriously improve your productivity. If you give yourself specific things to do each day then allow yourself to relax when they’re complete then you’ll be motivated to work harder to earn that all important down time. Try working in the mornings so you have the evenings free to bask in the glory of all the things you’ve completed that day.
- Don’t compare yourself to your friends:Everyone has that one friend who is always ahead of the game. The one that handed their dissertation in three weeks early and regularly visits their lecturers just for some stimulating conversation. The worst thing you can do at this time to compare yourself to other people. Everyone works at their own pace and in their own way so looking at what others are doing is just going to stress you out even more. Just block out other people’s progress and focus on yourself.
“Take this time to go outside, stretch your legs or head to the Robbo café for that well-earned yet incredibly average sandwich”
3. Schedule in regular breaks: However behind you think you are, working all day every day is not going to be any use. Set yourself some targets and reward yourself with a break when you complete them. Take this time to go outside, stretch your legs or head to the Robbo café for that well-earned yet incredibly average sandwich. Your brain physically won’t be able to handle all of the information without allowing it to rest and, if you don’t schedule in breaks, I’m sure your attention span will give you one anyway.
4.Make sure you get enough sleep:
All-nighters may seem necessary when you’re faced with a pile of unread books and only a matter of days before your exam but, in reality, it’s probably better for you to get a good night’s sleep than force yourself to sit up in the library all night. Sleeping well will make you more productive overall rather than letting yourself fall into a zombie-like state.
“Sleeping well will make you more productive overall rather than letting yourself fall into a zombie-like state”
I know this seems obvious but organisation really is the key. If you follow these other steps, especially making the timetable, you should already be most of the way there but make sure you don’t forget things like making sure you have the correct stationary and familiarising yourself with the format of the exam. Being organised is the most important thing to help you remain calm and combat the exam stress demon.