How to study for my psychology exams? Part 2 - Preparation

Studying for exams always require a lot of preparation. As mentioned earlier, you need to have studied the materials in some ways or methods before you start preparing for the exams. You will need to read through all the material thoroughly, if you have not studied anything during the semester. 

So what would be the results of good preparation for the exams? This would probably result in you being so well-prepared to answer most of the questions and pass the exam. However
I always believe it is a must to go through the material at least three or four times, in order to have some familiarity for the material. For most people, they might only go through the material twice - once when the lecturer is going through the notes and the second time when they are reading (for the first time) to prepare for exam.

So how are you going to get the recommended three to four, or even five, times of going through the material? Here are some steps to achieve those numbers of times:
1. Reading your lecture materials before the lectures and classes; even browsing through the lecture notes is good.
2. Listening attentive in class and asking questions when in doubt - being critical and asking questions would mean that you are understanding and "digesting" the material.
3.  If you are still unclear after the lectures/tutorials, make sure you read through the textbooks and ask the lecturers until you are clear of the doubts.
4. Do brief write-ups answering the individual chapter objectives. These are usually available in the first pages of the chapters or in your lecture notes. These write-ups are like summaries of the chapters, including all the main words, definitions, and theories. Make sure you do up a system to differentiate between these things, such as main words (in bold), definitions (in italics), and theories (in bold and italics). Doing this counts for 2 times of revision, as you have (1) read the material and (2) typed or written that out. I would recommend doing this because it becomes more efficient later when you start revising; reading 4 to 6 pages of your own write-up would definitely take less time than reading 30 to 50 pages of the textbook chapter.
Caution: It is recommended to do this soon after the lectures, as your memories would be fresh of what the important things to take note of. It may take several hours to days to do the write-up depending on how much content the chapter has. From my experience, it take about 10 to 14 days for each module/subject.
5. Go through the write-ups at least twice and do as much practice as possible before the exams.

My recommendations: Put down the dates for assignments and exams as early as possible in your diaries. Always start doing your assignments two weeks before the due dates; if assignments due dates clash, then start three or four weeks for them. Always start preparing for each of your exams four weeks before the actual day, to carry out the above Steps 4 and 5, two weeks for each step.  Lastly, make sure to include these start dates of the assignments and exams in the diaries too.

These above recommended methods have proved successful for the author. Hope they are as effective for your own preparation!!

Make sure you read Part 1 and 3 as well!!!

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