They say a workman shouldn’t blame his tools, and this is true for revision too. However the right tools will certainly help you do a far more effective, efficient and thorough job of revising!
It’s important to gather all the tools and equipment you need before you get started, so that you can get stuck in feeling confident that you’re fully equipped and ready to go.
Tools: Equipment and Checklists
Equipment is key, especially if you’re studying a Maths or Science subject that requires specialist tools. Find out exactly what you’re going to need for your exam, and make sure you get the right equipment for the job. Does your exam require a calculator, compass or protractor? Could A3 paper, flash cards or highlighters aid your revision? Download the handy checklist below and tick things off as you gather everything you need!
It’s also a great idea to make a topic checklist that lists every topic for every subject that you need to cover. This way, you can make sure you’re revising everything and don’t leave any gaps in your knowledge. Your checklist should account for every subject, topic and sub-topic that you could be tested on, and also the stage you’re at with each one. The ‘Topics by Question’ section of the Save My Exams website is a good place to start if you’re struggling to break your subject down! Here’s a template of what your checklist should look like:
Resources: Books and Notes
In order to revise effectively, it’s a good idea to collate your resources so that you know you have all the information you need in front of you. This could include notes from class, text books, library books and revision guides, which you may then condense into your own comprehensive page of notes.
CGP revision guides are great, as are the AQA ones (but only if this your exam board!) Books like these will help you structure your revision effectively, and are written with your specific exam in mind. You can therefore be pretty confident that if you need to know something, it'll be in there! A collaborative approach is best though, using multiple reliable sources to make one set of great notes.
As you make your notes, tick topics off on your checklist to keep track of your progress. There’s nothing more satisfying and motivating then crossing tasks off a list!
Practice questions: Topic Questions and Past Papers
We’ve got tons of practice questions on the Save My Exams website, which will help you get the first-hand practice you need to nail your exams.
Try our ‘Topic Questions’ first: these are exam-level questions organised into topics, which will help you ensure there are no gaps in your knowledge and that you’ve covered everything. Each question pack is 45-60 minutes long, so they’re the perfect way to split your revision into manageable chunks.
Next, print off some of our past papers and try doing some timed practice. And when we say print, we mean it! It’s very important that you practice answering questions that are in the exact same format as they'll appear in the real exam, as it means you’ll be used to how they look, you'll know your timings, and you'll be totally un-phased when you’re sat opposite your paper on the big day.
Getting as much ‘realistic’ practice in as possible could mean the difference between hitting your exam goals or just missing out on them. So gather those tools, make your notes, and then put that pen to paper and test yourself!