GCSE exams are the most stressful time of year, even for the most prepared students. With a number of exams to revise for, a busy school schedule alongside lots of nerves, the last couple of weeks can be stressful to say the least.
What can be even more stressful is if you’ve left revision until the very last minute. So if you have, here are 6 helpful tips that should help you prepare in the most effective way possible.
6 last minute revision tips for GCSEs are:
Get up early and prioritise your time
Turn off electronic devices
Keep it visual
Complete past papers
Hire a private tutor
Don’t panic and stay positive
1. Get up early and prioritise your time
Even if you’re not a morning person, the earlier you wake up, the more time you have to revise. And for last minute revision, time is crucial.
Prioritise and use this time wisely. In the last couple of week’s before your exams, it’s a good idea to print out the syllabus for each subject, as this gives you a list of all the information you’re expected to know. Highlight each list with traffic light colours, so you can quickly see the areas you need to prioritise with the time you have left. In green, mark the topics that you’re confident in, in orange, highlight the areas you need to practise more and in red, highlight any topics you don’t know. The red are the ones you need to work on first.
2. Turn off electronic devices
Last minute revision requires your full attention, yet chances are you will find yourself getting distracted by your phone, laptop, x box etc. We recommend turning off all tech for the duration of your revision session, so you won’t be tempted.
Also, to learn well you need sufficient sleep, and spending too much time looking at screens exposes you to artificial blue light, which makes you feel more alert. Your body needs time to wind down before you go to bed, so if you’re still looking at your phone after you get into bed for the night you need to break the habit! The National Sleep Foundation recommends that you should stop using electronic devices, like your phone, at least 30 minutes before bedtime.
3. Keep it visual
Recent statistics have shown that 65% of the population are visual learners meaning they need to see information in order to retain it. This can include pictures, diagrams, flow charts, colour coded notes and posters.
For quick and effective revision, we recommend sticking to visual aids like mind maps, flash cards and colour coded post-it notes. These revision techniques are great for retaining important statistics, quotes, dates and case studies, rather than trying to learn large chunks of text or lots of terminology.
4. Complete past papers
Get your hands on some past papers and complete them under timed conditions. Not only is it a great last-minute revision activity but also gives you a chance to practice your exam techniques.
Past papers also give you a rough idea of the type of questions you’ll be asked, how much time you can allocate to each section and any areas you need to go back over before the real exam.
5. Hire a private tutor
The best way to prepare for your exams is by getting a reliable, experienced tutor for the subjects you are struggling most with.
At GCSE Masterclass, we provide tuition for Maths, English, Science and many other subjects, and use only the very best tutors. All our staff are fully qualified, experienced teachers who have a proven track record of high quality teaching and excellent results within their GCSE classes.
Contact us to find out more about how we can help with last minute revision.
6. Don’t panic and stay positive
Although your exams are fast approaching, it’s important not to panic. In fact, simply having a positive can-do attitude will go a long way during this stressful period. Just remember you still have lots of time to digest information and you’ll probably be surprised at how much you actually know.
Written by Kate, for GCSE Masterclass.