‘A’ grade revision hacks to ace your exams
January. Let’s face it, it’s not really anyone’s favourite month. Christmas is over, your bank balance lighter and your jeans tighter. The days are as cold and grey as your mood and to top it all off exams are imminent. Happy New Year… NOT! But don’t despair, if the thought of revising has you wanting to tear out your hair, then we’re here to help with some revision hacks to maximise your memory AND boost your grades!
Revision Hack no. 1: What’s your type?
What’s your go-to typeface? Times New Roman, Arial, Calibri? Want to increase your revision retention rate by 7%? Then switch to Sans Forgetica. Designed specifically to help students remember their revision notes, Sans Forgetica was created by a team of designers and behavioural scientists from Melbourne’s RMIT University. Featuring a seven-degree left slant and gaps in the letters, Sans Forgetica is by design more difficult to read than the average typeface. Utilising the desirable difficulty learning principle this clever typeface prompts the brain to work harder and engage in deeper processing, and it really does work! A study of more than 400 students found those who revised text written in Sans Forgetica were able to remember 57% of the text compared to 50% in Arial. Sure 7% might not sound like a whole lot, but think of it in relation to your grade, 7% could make all the difference between getting a first or a 2.1!
Sans Forgetica works on both Mac and PC. Download it HERE, plus there’s even a Chrome extension.
Revision Hack no. 2: A helping hand
Taking revision notes by hand might seem incredibly old fashioned in today’s tech obsessed world, but don’t write off (get it??) the power of pen and paper just yet! A recent study carried out at universities in France and Norway compared retention rates in two groups of students, giving them the same text to copy and memorise. One group typed the information, the other wrote by hand. The result? You guessed it! The handwritten group performed better. Why? Handwritten notes better engage the senses, activating our brains and enhancing the learning process. So, to do well in school, sometimes you have to go old school!
Revision Hack no. 3: Listen and learn
Record your notes. While a particularly effective revision hack for linguistic learners, recorded notes are something every student should consider in addition to their written revision. Not only has it been scientifically proven to improve memory it also offers a great way to revise on the go. Listen to them anytime anywhere, your walk to uni is ideal. And it even works while you sleep! Scientists have found that listening to specific sounds during deep sleep can improve memory and recall. Hate the sound of your own voice? You’ll change your mind when you ace that exam.
Here are some tips for creating good audio notes.
- Make sure your recording levels are set correctly.
- speak clearly into the microphone.
- Minimise background sound. Record your notes somewhere quiet away from noisy appliances and potential interruptions.
- Give each clip a meaningful file name so you can find it quickly and easily.
- Organise your files. Group your clips by topic or book. Whatever works for you.
- Always make a back-up!
So there you have it. Scientifically proven revision hacks to maximise your memory, but if that’s not enough to revitalise your revision we’ve one more tool help you out. In collaboration with the University of Surrey’s School of Psychology, we’ve created the ultimate study soundtrack. With tracks chosen by our audience and backed by science. We’ve got the beats to get your synapses singing and fire up your focusing abilities. Listen for yourself right HERE!