Bilde exam Tips

Photo of girl reading books illustrating revision for exams

Exam Tips

As the exams are coming closer, start planning how you can be as well prepared as possible. Try different techniques, and figure out what works best for you.

Exam period

Before and in the exam period

Create revision timetables to get things done. Specific schedules will help you avoid procrastination, and give you increased motivation for each task completed. Read more about how you can use the different timetables.

Plans

Make a schedule where you plot in all the exams of the semester. This provides a great overview of the time until your first exam and the time between exams.

Semester plan

  • In a weekly schedule, you insert which days to revise what topic before each exam. Ensure to include regular breaks and leisure activities.
  • Ask your course teacher for examination papers from previous years. Note which topics occur most often, get used to the style of the questions and the timing of them.
  • Get an overview of each course and prioritise for revision. What is most important according the Learning Outcome and the learning activities? Is anything less important and need to be deprioritised?
  • Assess you knowledge: On what topics you are in control, and where do you need to focus your efforts?

Weekly plan

  • Each day, prepare a daily schedule for the next day.
  • List specific tasks that you can cross off when completed.
  • Break larger tasks into smaller subtasks.
  • Include when to start each task and when it should be done– but be realistic and allow necessary time to complete.
  • Include regular breaks.
  • Reward yourself when you have completed a task.

Example of a daily plan

Various strategies

Try various learning strategies

By approaching the syllabus with different methods, you might learn more efficiently! Figure out what works best for you.

  • Work in study groups or discuss subjects with other students.
  • Write summaries in your own words.
  • Make mind maps.
  • Write down key words that will help you remenber the topics.
  • Go through previous exams.
  • Explain and describe your knowledge to friends or family.
  • Talk loudly to yourself about the subjects.
  • Create test for yourself.
Photo: Kyle Gregory Devaras/Unsplash

 

The last few days

The last few days before the exam

  • Revise what you already know rather than attempting to learn something new.
  • Do not forget to spend some time on activities you enjoy, whether it is physical activity or watching a good film. Take care of yourself and take breaks. Reward yourself for your hard work and effort.
  • Be sure to have all the equipment ready for the exam. Download and test any necessary software. Read more about what you need below.

Since you have course materials available, home exams is likely to be more challenging than on-campus exams. There might be higher expectations for the quality of your answers and the extent of your critical and analytical thinking. You have to show that you understand how course concepts work together, and you cannot expect to have time to find new information or read your textbook during the exam.

So use your class lecture notes to define what is likely to be the content of the exam. Organise your reference material and locate where you find the information needed. You can mark sections of the book where you find important subjects with post-it notes for easy accessibility.

For math or science exams, organize formulas separately for easy access during the test.

Digital home exam

Digital oral exam

On the day of your exam

On the day of your exam

  • Start the exam with an attitude that you want to do your very best. You are prepared, focused and calm. You can do it!
  • Take time to read all the questions carefully, and take notes as you go along (key words).
  • Estimate the time available for each question. Start with the questions you think you can answer best. It often gives confidence, and trigger your memory for more challenging questions.
  • If you are writing a text exam, it is not necessary to worry about the structure of the text from the start. The most important is to get started! The structure will follow.
  • If you are a bit stuck, talk to a fellow student on phone or video call.
  • Eat food that gives you energy to endure the exam.
  • If you have time at the end of the exam, check your answers or text.

Good luck in your exams!

 

Unable to concentrate?

Unable to concentrate?

Here are some tips:

Clear you mind. Write down your thoughts or worries and put it aside. Let it be out of sight for some hours until YOU decide it is time to let the thought re-enter your head.

Continue with 20 min relaxation-techniques. Either focus on slowly tensing and then relaxing each muscle group, or just close your eyes and turn off any disruptions. If it feels unfamiliar or strange, do not give up straight away. “Practice makes perfect!”

Decide how long your work-session will last before you begin. Do not schedule too long, but be realistic. Then the task will be feasible and encourage high effort.

Stressed?

Focus on your own plans and tasks. Do not waste time comparing yourself with others.

Pay attention to one task at the time and the things you get done.

Talk to yourself in a positive manner.

Appreciate the value of taking breaks

Set up a realistic plan for the tasks for today, and complete them!

If the stress level is high, take a deep breath, hold your breath a few seconds, and calmly exhale. Repeat five times.

Resit exams

Resit exams

If the exam did not turn out the way you hoped, it is not the end of the world.  Read information about number of resits possible on the exam.

The courses have two available exams per academic year.

Counselling at NTNU

Counselling at NTNU

The student adviser at your study programme is your primary contact for questions regarding your studies.

If you want to talk to someone about other subjects, i.e. special needs accommodation or physical or mental health, please find an overview of all counselling services at NTNU in the link below.

Student guidance at NTNU

Contact

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