Exams can be stressful, the Library has some great tips to help you prepare for exams 

Here are a few ideas that may reduce those nerves, keep you calm and boost your confidence leading up to the day. 

Before the exam 

  • Find out well ahead of time what the rules and requirements are for your exam. Do you need a calculator, is it working? Is it an open book exam, do you need to bring a textbook? Is a pencil needed? Do you have the right grade pencil? Pack everything the day before. And don’t forget your identification.  
  • Find out where the exam is being held. If you’re not familiar with the area, do a test run well in advance. Find out how long it will take you to get there and allow for extra time, so you won’t be stressed before you arrive. If it’s an online exam, make sure you have access to a computer in a quiet environment where you won’t be disturbed, with a good internet connection. 
  • Your health and wellbeing is always important. It may be tempting to eat junk food, but this may impact your energy levels. Try to include nutritious well-balanced meals that are going to help your concentration and memory. Eat a healthy meal the day of your exam. Save that treat for after the exam. Stay hydrated well before the exam but not so much that you may be needing a toilet break every five minutes! 
  • Get a good night’s sleep! Studying late the night before is not a good idea. A good sleep will recharge your body and mind so you can feel your best at the exam. 
  • Think about wearing comfortable clothing and take a jacket with you in case the exam room is cold. Try not to wear noisy material or jewellery that can be distracting.  

During exam 

  • Take the time to read over the whole exam so you get a good overview of what is required. Carefully read any instructions so you understand what is being asked of you. 
  • Use your time wisely. Plan the amount of time you’ll spend on each question. Give more time to questions that are worth more marks. Try to leave some time to review and refine your answers.  
  • A good way to boost your confidence is by answering easier questions first. This may also give you extra time for the more difficult questions. Leave harder questions to the end. 
  • Try to answer every question. If unsure it is better to have something written down that might be relevant and could give you extra marks. You may find some ideas will come to you as you are writing. Use dot points if you’re running out of time.  
  • Whether you think you did well or not so well, treat yourself to something nice after your exams. Catch up with friends, go shopping or pop in those ear buds and get outside for a walk. 

When you’re ready, take some time to reflect on the exam and your preparation. Were you prepared enough? Did you manage your time effectively? For more advice on how to succeed in your exams, check out the Library’s tips for developing study skills.  

Good luck!