Student studying

Student Cheat Sheets – Preparing for exams

It’s that time of year again, if you are a student you may have exams now or coming up. Here are a few things to help keep you on track.

Be prepared

Don’t leave everything to the last minute. Make sure you have checked the module material on your virtual learning environment. The chances are your exam will largely be based on the material presented in lectures and online. Of course, if you can show your knowledge having read around the subject, that is even better.

Make sure you know where you need to be and when, what you need to have with you eg. a calculator. Look out for any communications from your module leaders.

Make a realistic revision schedule

Which modules do you have for exams? How much time do you have left before the exam? Break down what you need to cover for each module into manageable chunks. Aim to do a few hours of revision every day rather than cramming everything in the night before.

Find the revision style for you

You probably already know by now whether you need music playing to help you focus or whether you prefer a really quiet place to study. Not everyone likes working in silence so try revising with a friend or having the TV on in the background if it helps.

Customise your notes, try mind maps, colour coding, notes on cards or whatever helps you learn the topic.


Nutrition revision tips

Make sure you understand everything, including any calculations you might need to do. If you don’t understand something, ask a fellow student or your teacher.

If you have access to software like myfood24 through your course, you can use this to help you think about key topics in nutrition. Keeping track of what you are eating using myfood24 will show you information about specific nutrients, portion sizes, and how close you are to the reference intakes. Even if you don’t have access to the myfood24 tool directly, you can check our website to read previous blogs. For example, what are the reference intakes, and how you use them. Other blogs cover topics on food tables, dietary assessment methods and behaviour change.

Check out other good sources of information through the Nutrition Society, British Nutrition Foundation and the Association for Nutrition.

Look at past exam papers

You can practise your answers, perhaps with a time limit, and you will feel more confident about the sort of questions you might see. Remember though that the syllabus can change and exam formats can also change.

Reward yourself

When you have done some good work, take a break, watch a good movie, do some exercise, meet with friends.

Brain foods for studying

When you are studying, don’t forget to eat regularly. Healthy eating principles will make you feel virtuous and there is some, if limited, evidence that it could help your grades. A systematic review (make sure you know what that is), found seven studies which had looked at dietary intake and academic achievement in University students. The study found small to moderate significant positive associations for eating breakfast, regular meal consumption, and meeting national recommendations for fruit intake.

There are no ‘super foods’ that you need to eat. Just make sure you do remember to eat! Don’t get so caught up in revision that you forget. If you fancy eating chocolate before the exam, you never know, some research suggests it might help episodic memory.

Other things to help

As well as eating sensibly, make sure you get enough sleep and take exercise. All these things, and careful revision will help you to do your best.

Good luck!

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