Tips and Study Techniques
A lot of people find study really difficult to master,
especially those that are less familiar with examinations. While
there are no hard and fast rules about studying, there are a few
things that you can be aware of to help you make the most of your
exam preparation. Remember that everyone is different, and someone
who studies well actively thinks about what is best practice for
- Make sure you manage your time. You will need to make study a
priority and commit time to ensure you have learnt everything you
need to when working towards the exams.
- Establish your learning priorities. This is a difficult task
because the amount you could learn is seemingly endless, but there
are several pointers. Looking through your materials and working
with your tutors is one of the best ways but don't dismiss
reviewing the syllabus and checking through old exam papers. Don't
discount other ICS students and members as a resource. Talking to
them can help you establish a plan of action for how you intend to
tackle your exams.
- Be familiar with past examiners reports. These always hint at
common pitfalls and mistakes that you can actively seek to avoid in
your exam. Go to the Resources/Learning Resources for Students tabs
on the ICS website/
- Practice makes perfect - try answering past exam questions and
getting used to the discipline of writing an exam. These can also
be found on the ICS website
- Be mindful of your own learning patterns. Again, there is no
set of rules for how to study, it really is 'best fit', but there
are tips you can think about:
- Research indicates that study lasting more than 40 minutes is
more often than counterproductive. Plan to study for 30-40 minutes
at a time before you have a break.
- Whatever you do with your break time, get up and move away from
your desk (a walk and some fresh air is a really good idea). You
should look at having a short break before getting back to it.
- Make sure your study area is comfortable and has lots of fresh
air and good light.
- In the weeks coming up to your exam you will really want to
make sure you are well rested. Some studies indicate that sleep is
the single biggest factor influencing examination
performance. It's generally accepted that having a routine
sleeping pattern (going to bed at the same time and getting up at
the same time) is the best way to achieve quality sleep.