UKEdMag: Revision Spiralling Out of Control? by @nickotkdV

For me the best tip is to remain calm and to know that there are lots of people who have become huge successes but did not pass the first time around. History is scattered with people who did not succeed at their first attempt. Below are some tips I believe will be helpful to all learners (From KS2 to KS5):

This article originally appeared in the free April 2016 online UKEdMagazine – Click here to view.

You can purchase printed editions of the UKEdMagazine by clicking here.

1. Start revising early –

The earlier you try to get the revision starter the better chance you have of retaining the information. Revision does not always mean just reading over notes or doing past papers. Think of the way you learn best and replicate that strategy. Revision can be writing about the subject, Revision could be blogging about it, explaining it, Teaching it or reciting it. It could be designing a posters or playing games linked to the subject (I did just say games!!). Revision can be done in many different ways but the earlier you start, the better!

2. Don’t spend ages making your notes look pretty –

Remember that you are the person who will need the most! My fiancée is currently doing a professional qualification linked to her job and her module booklets are covered in scribbles and notes, there are multi-coloured post -it notes all over the books. She understands what they all mean and that is the main thing. These notes are for you and if you learn from them then that is good enough. Revision is about retaining and learning information, not presenting it nicely.

3. Look after yourself –

Simply, if you are tired the information will not go in. Rest is vital to successful revision sessions. Linked to this is eating and drinking; eating and drinking regularly is vital to successful revision. If you do not look after your body your brain will not function properly. A healthy body makes a healthy mind.

4. Personalise your revision –

Find creative ways of making sure you are not just reading notes. Like I mentioned within my first point, make revision fun and memorable; Colour code them, draw poster, create cue card, type you notes into PowerPoint, excel sheets, etc. Remember the notes are for you so tailor to your preferred learning style.

5. Read the exam timetable properly – make sure you know exactly when the exams are. There is nothing worse then rushing to attend an exam or turning up late.

In the end as long as you have tried your absolute best you can look back on the exam with no regrets in the knowledge that there was nothing else that you could have done to performed any better. Remember you are unique, special and interesting people and exams are only a tiny part of your life.

Nick Overton @nickotkdV is a primary teacher from Leicester and UKEdChat Ambassador for the East Midland @UKEd_EMids. Read his blog at or on the UKEdChat site at

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