18 November 2010

Sixth Form Organisation & Revision Tips

Today's post is going in a different direction to the usual beauty related posts I normally write. I was recently asked: 'Please can you do a post on how you stay organized for 6th form? Do you also have any revision tips?' so as I have an exam in January I thought this post might motivate me to start some revision!

Sixth Form College Revision Organisation Tips

I like to be organised but I wouldn't say i'm the most organised person in the world and I can be quite lazy with it. I have lots of books and folders for 6th Form but the main problem I have is keeping my notes in order and not losing them.

Buy a notebook or use folders for your notes
I tend to work on paper; I used to have a Pukka Pad notebook that i'd work from which was separated into sections for each subject but as I walk for 20 minutes to get to 6th Form it ended up being really heavy and in some lessons I didn't end up using it.  I now work from paper which is obviously a lot lighter but it means I have to make sure I keep it in a folder otherwise it just ends up screwed up in the bottom of my bag. I'd really recommend getting a notebook similar to the one i've mentioned above as they are really convenient and help to keep your work in order.

Use a planner or calendar for deadlines
Most people have a planner for the year where they write down when exams and deadlines are - i'll admit I don't have one this year as I found I didn't use one much last year. If you find that you forget when work is due in or just like to plan out your time a bit better then you'd probably find one of them really helpful. Paperchase do a few different ones which aren't too expensive and look quite pretty too. You can get ones that go from September to July but i'm not sure if you can buy them all year round or just at the start of the year. There are also lots of apps that are useful for this kind of thing or just the calendar in your phone with plenty of reminders is just as good. 

Remove distractions 
Revision has never been a strong point for me; I have a bit of a problem with motivation and can never be bothered to revise and the tiniest thing will distract me. I like the SelfControl app as you can block out any distracting websites like Facebook or Twitter which make it much easier to stay focussed on your work or revision. I think i'm becoming more motivated as I really want to get into a good uni but when I took my GCSEs I didn't take them seriously enough. I'm paying the price now though as I got a C in maths and some of the unis i'd like to go to want a B so I can't go to them. I couldn't put myself through a re-sit though as I know I wouldn't do any better! It's taken me a while to find the techniques that work best for me so I thought i'd share them with you.

Write up your notes
The main thing I do to revise is copy out my notes. I usually type them up or make posters with important facts and then stick them on my wall and read through them regularly. I find that re-writing things helps me to remember them as when i'm writing things down in lessons i'm not usually concentrating very well. At home if it's quiet then I learn a lot more from making notes. Sometimes it's difficult to know exactly what you'll need to learn for the exam so finding the specification for your subject is really helpful. I know for some of the subjects i've taken you can get them online and I like to use them as a checklist when i'm revising. This usually means that i'm not making uneccessary notes about things that aren't on the exam. It also means that if I haven't been taught something then I can learn it before the exam and I don't get a question on something i've never heard of!

Make Q&A revision cards
Another technique which works really well for more factual subjects (I use it for Food Technology and Psychology) is to make question and answer cards which make learning things a bit more interesting. I usually write a question on one side and the answer on the back and then test myself with them as they are really quick and simple to use. I also find that I learn things by actually making the cards as you have to simplify everything when making a question up. It also means that you're answering a specific question which is what you'd do in an exam.

Answer practice exam questions 
Following on from this I also like to do practise exam questions. These really help me to learn the right way to answer questions and it definitely makes it easier in an exam as I can write down things a bit faster. I only do these a couple of weeks before the exam as there are only so many questions you can do before you start repeating them! For some subjects there are only a few exam papers online so it's worth waiting until you've learnt most of the theory before you try and attempt them. 
The main thing that I have to do is motivate myself to actually revise. I can only concentrate when my bedroom is tidy for some reason and unless i'm typing up notes I have to move my laptop because it's so tempting to turn it on!

Thanks for reading such a long blog post! If you have any similar advise type posts you'd like me to write feel free to ask in the comments below. I'd love to hear any organisation or revision tips you have too.

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  1. These are great tips! I'm about to pick my GCSE's and I really needed some tip! I love the poster idea! :) x

  2. I know what you mean about having your bedroom tidy. I would not be able to revise proper if my bedroom was a mess, I don't know why!

    I feel the same I didn't revise enough for my GCSE's I didn't do bad but I didn't do as well as my mother wanted me to do, oh well.
    I've found that most Uni's look more for your personality and dedication to the subject & not just the grades these days, as 100's of students are going to have BBC or AAA or what ever.. well thats what i've heard haha

  3. this was really good, i have a psychology exam in january and i dont think i know enough :( i can do it though, but its this little thing called motivation hahaha, and i also cant revise unless my bedroom is tidy.. good luck for the exam! xx

  4. I have the same thing with my room having to be tidy :)
    Great tips!

  5. great tips!
    thanks for posting xx

  6. Great tips! I end up revising in my local library because I keep procastinating at home :( x

  7. great tips :) glad to know i'm not the only one horribly distracted by everything haha :') my gcses were similar i got put into seperate sciences and only got C's in each one :') xxx

  8. i love the q&a cards idea (:!xxx

  9. Ooh I envy you so much for being so organised! Well done!

  10. Thanks for the great tips, I'm going into 6th form next year and I'm sure these tips will help. :D

    What I also find helpful for revision, especially for sciences, is to buy revision guides and use them, they were extremely helpful with my modules last year ^_^

  11. Thank you so much for posting this! I struggle with revision so this is going to come in very handy! :D xo

  12. great tips! i have always strugglled with organization and this post really helped. Thanks!

  13. hi caz just stick at git girl hard work pays off! : d

    check out my blog for a giveaway just in time to cheer us up for the festive season xxx