With over 5 million teenagers sweating over GCSE’s this Summer – and just as many parents sympathetically chanting Calculus at the breakfast table, we were interested to hear the below hacks from online study site Tassomai, who put them together along with education expert, tutor and software entrepreneur Murray Morrison.
Essentially – cramming is a waste of time and what you really need to succeed is a pencil, a singing voice and a reasonably passive cat…
1. Don’t work through practice papers; Pick one question at a time, look at the mark scheme and then do the question. When you’re confident you know how the marking works, you can start doing questions and marking them to see if you’re getting all the marks.
It is as important to understand, strategically, HOW the marks are awarded as it is to know all the answers inside out.
2. Don’t use highlighters to mark the things you don’t know; use a pencil to cross out the things you do know.
This builds positive feedback – a sense of achievement as you cross things off, rather than highlighting your gaps.
3. Don’t copy your notes out again; make very short micro-notes on flash-cards.
Rewording and condensing info causes you to process and internalise information far more effectively.
4. Don’t just sit looking at your text book; read it aloud to yourself, your cat, your parents etc
Read it, sing it, perform it – make it memorable! The more processes (movement, hearing, speaking) you use when learning, the better.
5. Don’t “cram”; spread your revision over a long period instead of a single intense burst.
Studying over a long time allows the information to properly sink in and improves understanding.
6. Embrace technology; there are a host of online learning platforms that are easy to use and track your progress.
These platforms tailor their programmes around you, based on your individual strengths and weaknesses.
7. Don’t revise for your exam; instead, teach that material to somebody else – a brother/sister, parent, grandparent, school friend, anyone.
If you can explain it to someone, if you can tell the story, you can explain it to an examiner.
Find out more at Tassomai.