Revision techniques – which is best?
Revising is reminding yourself of information you’ve forgotten, reinforcing your learning and checking your understanding of subjects. There are several types of revision technique, but the most effective methods are the ones that use interaction instead of passive learning. Some examples of active studying include:
- Summarising or bullet-pointing information under headings
- Changing the format of material, such as drawing charts or diagrams
- Teaching or discussing with others
- Connecting ideas in a mind map
- Comparing and contrasting areas of work
Just looking at your revision notes won’t help you absorb any information, but actively reorganising material gets you thinking about what you’re reading. As a result, writing bullet points under headings or creating a mind map is a much better way of absorbing and remembering what you’re studying.
Practising the exam format is another really effective way of revising; for example, if your exam is going to have essay questions, you should practice writing essay style answers so you can communicate your knowledge of the subject in the right way. Writing exam answers is a skill, so including exam preparation in your revision will make sure you’re fully prepared.
Some people use the cramming method for revising, hoping that all that a last minute refresh will help them remember information. However, spacing our your revision is actually a much more effective technique as constantly reinforcing learning over a longer period helps your brain retain information.
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