It’s hard to get motivated to study and I want to study medicine at university so it’s important for me to make myself study so I can achieve top grades at A-level!
Backstory on my revision: last year, I didn’t really study a lot which was a poor choice on my behalf. Because of this, I failed my Biology and Maths mock and got an E in my chemistry mock. This really made me kick into action. After these mocks I made myself work harder and in my recent mocks, I got a C in Biology and Chemistry and a D in maths, 3 marks off of a C. This is a huge improvement from what it was and I plan on improving more!
If you want some tips on how to get motivated or revision techniques, then read on!
1. Make studying the last thing on your to-do list
Yes, you read that right! Making sure you do everything else first means that by time you get round to revising then you can’t procrastinate as you’ve done everything you need to!
I do this all the time and it’s actually very helpful. It means you don’t need to worry about fitting in anything else as it’s already done!
You don’t have to get a drink because you got one before studying. You don’t have to fold those clothes, you did it before studying! See what I mean?
2. Use a to-do list instead of a timetable
I never keep to timetables, I never have, I feel like you’ll be more productive if you decide on what you’re doing just before you start. It’s also better this way as you can prioritise what needs more of your focus. Also it’s more specific.
For example, on your to-do list, you may write “equilibria questions for chemistry” whereas on a revision timetable, it’d say “chemistry revision.” I keep my to-do lists in my bullet journal but you can do it on any paper you find or have!
Having it written down will also keep you more motivated to study. More motivation = more studying = better grades!
3. Use apps to keep you off your phone!
This is a big one for me as my phone is definitely one of my biggest distractions. I have the app Flipd on my phone and it’s amazing. You can use it free like myself or you can use the premium subscription.
Basically, you can keep it on a countdown timer while you revise and if you exit the screen it’s ends the timer or, if you don’t have enough willpower, you can go on full lock mode that gets rid of all your apps apart from the default ones for a set time.
You may feel like it’s scary but I’ve tested it out and your apps do all come back! This works a charm as you don’t even get the notifications which distract you even if you don’t check them!
4. Make pretty notes!
They’ll motivate you, I promise! I use crayola super tips and black fineliners for my notes and I love how they look!
Now, it’s alright making these notes but you do need to keep looking back and going over them! It’s not going to work if you write them out and leave them! It’s a waste of time and it won’t benefit you!
Although making your notes pretty does help with studying, don’t take too long writing them! Spending hours on a title is hours you could’ve spend revising important topics!
5. School-run revision/study sessions don’t always work!
At school, I don’t attend biology revision sessions as it’s all based on what others want to do rather than what everyone wants to do. This doesn’t benefit me at all.
Instead I stay behind by myself on these days and go over what I need to revise. I feel maths is useful as only a small number of people attend so solutions can be explained slowly. They can also be repeated if needed.
In chemistry they allow you to do what you need, although I do find myself getting a little more distracted in these. I prefer some structure.
6. Don’t study for too long!
You’ve probably heard this before but you’ll get bored and distracted if you do it for too long. My best time is 30 minutes at a time, it’s short enough so I don’t get distracted but long enough for me to get work done.
After you’ve done your study “burst”, take a break to get a drink, eat or move about. This allows you to reset your mind for your next 30 minutes or time slot.
7. Use music to your advantage
Don’t listen to metal music or ones with heavy base. I listen to acoustic versions of all my favourite songs, this is because it’s quite calming and the rhythm and upbeat of pop songs can’t force me to lose distraction.
I usually just have music playing so I have background noise as I feel this actually helps me. My house can be quite loud since I have 5 sisters so music really helps drown out the background chatter!
8. Your teachers will help!
I always go to my chemistry teacher before a test/exam so she can talk me through any areas I’m confused about.
Also my teachers provide me with exam questions if I ask and talk through any areas I’m uncertain about. I used to be too scared to do this but now I’m sure my teachers are getting sick of me! That doesn’t matter though! It’s better to have all this preparation!
9. Keep track of all your test scores
It may be disheartening, especially if you do terrible on a test, trust me, I know. By doing this though, you then know what techniques are working.
As well as this, make a list of topics you were weaker at so you have a starting point for revision next time you sit down to study. This does help.
In Maths, I never understood logs so I made a point to revise logs for a full hour to the point where I was tired of looking at them. On my next exam however, I got the 5 mark log question right!
10. Study where you’re comfortable
It doesn’t matter where you study as long as you’re comfortable. I prefer to study in my conservatory at the table, or in school as I like to have a table that I can spread everything out on. Sometimes however, if I’m not really feeling it then I’ll do a shorter study period in my bedroom. I usually don’t get as much done but it’s at least a little better than none!
I hope these tips help you and if you have any of your own then please share them below!