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Tips to Reduce Stress and Revise Effectively Before Exams

Updated: May 1, 2021

Last Hour Tips to Reduce Stress and Revise Effectively Before Exams

We all are acquainted with the panic induced mornings right before a major examination when we frantically look through our textbooks and try to squeeze in 5-6 revisions in just a couple of hours.

It is very necessary to deal with such scenarios with tact and calmness as taking the wrong approach to the situation can have a negative impact.

To help you deal with such stressful situation on the right way, here are a few tips and tricks for effective revision right before an examination

Create brief and to the point notes of all major topics

One of the biggest challenges you will face before entering your exam hall is to assure yourself that you have covered all the major topics. The last-minute stress often clouds our cognitive skills and doubts what our brain remembers.

To prevent that from happening, create succinct and to-the-point notes that efficiently capture the crux of a topic in just a line. They don’t need to be well-structured sentences. As long as it can help you recall the basic idea behind a theory, you are good to go.

Review summaries rather than going through entire chapters

Summaries efficiently conclude the crux of an entire chapter within one page or paragraph which can be extremely helpful during the last-minute check. You can highlight major points in the summary, which can also work as notes.

An added advantage of going through summaries is that they are kind of pre-mapped answer guides to possible questions on the exam. They usually consist of the same word limit that you require to answer a question on the paper, which can prove to be really helpful.

Solve past papers

Usually, teachers follow the same pattern and questioning categories as they have in the previous exams. Hence, solving past papers is a great way to figure out what is likely to come up in exams. It also works as a credible practice test which will help you ascertain how well prepared you are.

It will also help you figure out which sections require more concentration. You can strategize on how you will approach them if they come up in the exam, saving you from a major panic attack.

Switch-off your electronic devices

Sure, you will feel like browsing through social media or chatting with your friends will help you beat the stress. Your brain might convince you that it deserves a break from all the rapid studying.

But, you need to fight those urges and refrain from using your electronic devices for anything other than studying. If possible, you can hand over the devices to your parents, siblings, or roommates for the time being. And if you can’t do that, there is an app called SelfControl which will do the trick. You can set a time limit on the app, and it will block all your social media apps during that period.

Read it out loud

One of the best tricks to focus on what you are studying is to read everything out loud. By doing so, your brain is engaged with three different stimuli (speaking, hearing, and reading), which help you concentrate more effectively. By doing so, you also increase the retention of the information and help you embed it in your head.

It will significantly improve your focus and prevent you from getting distracted, which often occurs when you read in your head.

Close the book and quiz yourself after completing each segment

As you will have a concise time frame to retain all the information, you need to study with 100% concentration and be confident that you have retained the information.

One of the best methods to ensure that is by periodically quizzing yourself after each segment. Close your book, and try to recollect everything that you have just read. It’s okay if you don’t remember everything to a tee; all you need to make sure that you have grasped the concept.

Skip what is difficult

If you find certain concepts difficult to understand, then it is wise just to skip them. You don’t have enough time to properly comprehend the topic, let alone remember it for the exam. You can use that valuable time to revise the stuff that you do understand.

Have a good night’s sleep

Studies have shown that six hours’ sleep increases your brain’s efficiency in memorizing information.

Hence, it is paramount that you get a good night’s sleep before the day of your exam. Exhausting your brain over continuous studying can be detrimental. It can considerably increase your stress levels and decrease your retention capacity.


While these tips will help you efficiently prepare under the stressful hours before the exam, it is advisable that you create a proper schedule and dedicated timetable, which can give you plenty of time to revise and recollect every topic in your syllabus.

However, if you are the kind of person who prefers to have a thorough last-minute study session, these tips, tricks, and strategies will definitely come in handy.


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