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Revision tips

The norm and what you should do instead

For so long, it has been normal to just memorise notes over and over before an exam just a few days before each exam. However, I believe this is not the most efficient way. I have a few key revision tips that I used effectively while studying at university.

What you should do is to have a structured plan, and adapt it where needed. This helps to make sure you can prepare accordingly for all your different subjects. A great website is:
https://schedulebuilder.org/, here you can organize a bespoke timetable which suits your needs.

To revise for GCSE Mathematics, I would advise going through all the slides I have prepared for you as many times as you need before you feel very comfortable and able to have a rough picture in your mind as to the material of each lesson.

To help this process, you can draw a mind map for each topic and branch off with each lesson and then branch off with all the different parts of each lesson. Try to memorize each lesson until you feel like you understand the main contents (in most lessons there are a few very important slides to remember such as 3.1.4). Here is an example of drawing a mind map, try to do this for the 5 topics.

Solving questions

As you solve questions, you will realise which slides you will need to learn the most. It’s important to realise that you are a human and your capacity is somewhat limited, so try to prioritise the most important slides and understand what they mean. For example, proofs are mainly done to help you understand why something is the case, and at GCSE maths it is rare to actually have to show a long proof. Ultimately in the exam, you want to maximise what you can do, so if you get a question which you are not sure about, try it for a minute and if you get nowhere try to look at the slides before the answer.

One of the key revision tips is prioritisation. In the exam, you have to prioritise the questions you are 100% sure at answering, so in the first round of you completing the paper skip any questions which you cannot solve after a minute or two and keep going. Once you have completed the questions you can solve, you should have enough time to go back and attempt to solve the questions you were uncertain on. This will mean that you had enough time at least getting the marks you should have got from solving questions you could solve. 

By being able to categorize the topics and the lessons, you will better know which material is needed for each type of question. The harder exam questions typically require the need for combining the understanding of different lessons, so try to see how content interlinks and how you can use it.

Revision tips closer to the exam

A key bit of advise I would give is to try to understand the content before doing the past papers, otherwise, you will most likely rely too heavily on viewing the solutions or slides rather than using the knowledge you have amassed. On the other hand, you should not wait to close to exam day before doing the past papers, since they are very beneficial to understand the key content and how to use the knowledge you have learnt. So maybe within a few weeks of your exam day, you should start solving the papers and try any questions again that you got wrong from the content I have produced for each topic.  

I hope you have found my revision tips useful, if you have more queries, you can write them in the forums, or message me.  Being able to know the answers to your questions will really help your ability to solve any type of problem.

April 24, 2019

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