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Ace your exams: revision tips for studying in Sheffield

The end-of-year exam period is nearly upon us and so we’ve come up with the ultimate revision guide to help you through the Uni stress and help nail your exams.

Start early

One of the hardest parts of revision is getting going in the first place. Starting early means you can spread all your revision out and you won’t have to cram it all in closer to the exam date. 

Creating a plan for your revision may also help. Chunking the revision into smaller sections makes revision look a lot less overwhelming than taking it all on as a whole and having no structure. Planning will take time at first, however, it will save you time in the long run instead of worrying about what you’re going to revise day by day.

Tidy desk, focused mind

Researchers from Princeton University found that working in a cluttered environment can affect our ability to focus. You may feel like it is a waste of your time but, again, it will save time as you go - whether it be finding your notes or your favourite pen and prevent you from procrastinating as there are fewer distractions. Therefore, a tidy work environment can keep you focused on the task at hand. Research also shows that a tidy desk and room lowers stress levels.

Active learning methods 

The learning pyramid identifies the seven methods of learning and their effectiveness for knowledge retention which is crucial for exams. 

‘Active Learning Methods’ such as group discussion, practice by doing and particularly teaching others are far more effective than ‘Passive Learning Methods’.

Some people may find working alongside friends a distraction from actual work, but you could try working together and testing each other in order to retain knowledge better.

A crucial step in every revision plan is to practice by doing. If past papers or exam questions are available to you, don’t waste them. Try and do them without looking at your notes and importantly, mark your own work and learn from the mistakes you make.

However, studies show the best way of learning is by teaching others so grab a friend or housemate and tell them about the work you produced and revised that day (even if they don’t listen).

Change the scenery

It is important that you’re comfortable in the environment working in, however being in the same place constantly can really get you down and unfocused.

Getting out and about with the sole purpose of doing work can really motivate and focus your mind. Sheffield has a plethora of great coffee shops ideal for working in and never too far from your accommodation: Hygge, 200 Degrees, Tamper Coffee, Broomhill Costa, Western Bank Starbucks, Coffee Revolution or Couch to name just a few. 

Don’t forget to take breaks

Check out our guide on what Sheffield has to offer for your study break.

It can be hard taking yourself away from your work and feeling study breaks aren’t worth it, but you if don’t, you’ll most likely get burnt out.

Studies show that a short walk is beneficial for mental well-being, especially stress relief, and allows you to come back to your work with fresh eyes.

So make use of what The Outdoor City has to offer: The Botanical Gardens, Endcliffe Park, Mount Pleasant Park or if it’s raining, the Winter Gardens is home to over 2,000 plants from across the world.

Best of luck in your exams!

Ace your exams: revision tips for studying in Sheffield

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April 2023

Ace your exams: revision tips for studying in Sheffield
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