Revision for passing your GCSE exams

Revision is a key part of passing your exams, and should not be taken lightly, no matter how much you might prefer to be watching Netflix or hanging out with your friends.

Remain focused on your revision, taking breaks every so often to relax and make it more manageable. While it’s imperative to revise, don’t stress too much about it, because this will only lead to less effective revision.

Starting your revision early is the best thing you can do. Don’t leave everything to the last minute, because that never ends well. To realise your full potential, you should be checking over your notes and books from the first week of school till the last.

Find the strategy that works best for you, because everyone works differently. Some students prefer to do 30 minutes of revision, rest for 30 minutes, and then repeat, over a few hours. Other students prefer to just go straight into three hours of reading and notes, without stopping for a break.

Revision resources and past papers

There are a number of good websites out there to help with your revision, such as BBC Bitesize, S-cool and Project GCSE, which should hopefully make your revision simpler and more effective.

One of the best ways to prepare for your exams is by completing past papers. Find out which exam board you are sitting each exam with, and check out their websites, because they will have archives full of previous exam papers for you to test yourself out on.

Not only will you be able to get a feel for the questions asked and writing style required to get top marks, but it can help you identify gaps in your knowledge which you can then read up on afterwards.

Ask your teachers questions, because they are experts in their field. Talk to them and pay attention to what they say; they will probably be able to explain just about anything to you.

With focus, effort and proper resources, your revision should be a piece of cake, and propel you to the grades you want and deserve.

Sitting your exams

Pretty much every student sitting their GCSEs gets nervous; understandable, because they are very important. However, you need to stay calm and not allow your nerves to get the better of you. We have a number of tips to help you perform to the best of your ability.

If you get stuck, breathe deeply, and visualise your revision notes and subject lessons. If you still can’t recall the information, then move on to the next question and come back to it later.

Exam rules

First things first, make sure you know all the rules of each exam. You aren’t allowed labels on water bottles, pencil cases must be see-through, and phones must be handed in beforehand.

Some subjects, such as maths, require a calculator for one module, so you will need to ensure you have one with you. However, calculators are also banned from some other exams, so pay attention. You don’t want to be disqualified from an exam just because you still had your calculator in your pocket or pencil case, even if you weren’t using it.

Bring the right equipment

Black biro? Check. Pencil? Check. Rubber? Check. Compass? Oh no!

Please don’t let this happen to you during your exams. While exam invigilators will usually have some spare equipment, it’s imperative that you find out what apparatus you will need before each exam, and bring them with you (and bring spare pens and pencils too, trust us).

Always put everything you need in your bag the night before, to help prevent you getting even more stressed on the day of your exams searching for a protractor when you should be leaving.

Always read the question!

Every year we hear stories of people not reading the question properly, rushing through their exam paper and losing easy marks, which could be the difference between an A* and an A grade.

In addition to this, some students miss entire pages by accidentally turning two over at once, or not checking the back cover of their exam paper. If you do this you could lose a lot of marks, so be attentive throughout.