General Revision Advice
Revision is the act of reviewing and memorising material you have already studied and understood, as preparation for exams. If you don’t understand a topic or concept fully, you will need to get a teacher, carer or friend to help you to understand. Text books and other resources may also help.
There are various ways you can revise, for example:
- Making notes that summarise the topic
- Drawing diagrams or mind maps that show how a process works or how ideas are related
- Using flash cards with a word or short phrase on one side, and a detailed definition or explanation on the other
- Look at past exam papers, and their associated mark schemes
It is important that you allocate enough time to revise for each exam you are taking. Creating a revision timetable can help you do this. To do this you will need to know:
- The dates for all your exams
- How many exam papers you will sit for each subject
- Which topics are covered in which paper
- An estimate of how much time each topic needs
With the above you can draw up a plan for what subjects and topics will be revised each week.
Be realistic about how much you can achieve each day, plan for short breaks every 45 minutes, and don’t revise late the day before exams.
Useful Revision Websites
In the table below are some sites we recommend for revision. Look on Moodle for additional subject specific revision material, as there is some material we have bought which we cannot make available on our website, and some resources require passwords.
Logging on to Sam Learning
If you’re new to Sam Learning, or are unsure on how to use it – then take a look at the help sheet attached below. If you’re continuing to have issues logging on then speak to a teacher or speak to an ICT Technician.
- Sam Learning Help Sheet (Adobe PDF Document)
- Year 8 Revision Assembley (Microsoft PowerPoint Document)
- Year 9 Revision Techniques Poster (Adobe PDF Document)
Although exams are supposed to be a means of measuring your understanding of a subject, some students don’t achieve the results they deserve because they don’t cope very well in an exam situation. Prepare for the exam by practicing past papers under timed conditions. The methods below can improve your performance.
- Read each question carefully, underlining key points
- If you can’t understand or answer a question, come back to it at the end
- Make sure you pay attention to the command word (i.e. state, explain, describe, contrast, etc)
- Give yourself enough time to answer each question.
- For multiple choice exams you could do this by dividing the length of the exam by the number of questions. This gives you a rough idea of how much time you should spend on each question (e.g. a one hour exam, with 30 questions means two minutes per question).
- For written exams, look at how many marks are available for each question, and allocate more time for questions with more marks, usually the later questions on the paper.
- Always attempt every question – guess if you have to rather than leave it blank
- Arrive in good time for your exam as arriving late makes you even more stressed than you would have been.
- Make sure you have the right equipment: you can’t rely on the school having enough spares to go round
- Make sure you have had a good night’s sleep before the exam – this is more valuable than last minute revision
Top Tips for Revising for Maths
- Before you start revising, get all your notes sorted, and draw up a list of all the topics you need to cover. These can be found in the Skills Booklets.
- Plan exactly what and when you are going to revise, and be strict with yourself.
- Don’t just read through the textbook! The only way to revise maths is to do maths.
- Don’t just practice the topics that you can do. Work your way through the topics that you struggle with, because it is much better to struggle on them at home, when you have time on your side and the answers available, than it is to struggle in the exam.
- Make sure you ask for help. Ask your teacher, classmates or use something like the Ask Nrich Forum (website), where you can ask maths questions and get really good answers very quickly.
- Work through past papers. Get a feel for exam type questions. These are given out by your maths teacher.
- Practice using your calculator! All calculators work differently, and unless you have used yours for lots of different types of questions (trig, Pythagoras, negative numbers, indices), you might come unstuck in the exam. Find out if there are any problems early enough to correct them!
- Use the internet. There are so many websites that are available to help. See the ‘Useful Revision Resources’ section above for some ideas.