10 Strategies to Help with Exam Stress

During the run-up to exams, it is easy to become stressed with all the pressure which can cause us to become snappy and terse. Here are some strategies for keeping the stress under control.

1. Take time between revision sessions to relax. If you are always working, this could mean you do worse on the exam day because stress negatively impacts sleep.

2. As said in the last point, make sure to get good sleep. It is proven that sleep boosts memory and productivity which are vital for performing well in exams.

3. Talk to people about revision/exam strategies. Other kids are revising too and perhaps you can ask to use or share their flashcards or study tips. Your parents might have good advice on exams too.

4. Hang around people you feel at ease with. If you are around people who make you feel stressed it might affect your score because you will be thinking about them instead of your exams.

5. Start revising early. If you begin revising one or two days before your exam, it won't give you enough time to properly study and may lead to you staying up late, which won't be good for your performance if you do it the night before.

6. Keep your routine similar. Making drastic changes in your life – e.g quitting a sport, and so on – will take away opportunities to have fun and relax. You also may regret it after the exams are finished. However, making some changes like missing a practice on the night before your exam could help you.

7. Ask your teachers questions about how to approach revision and your exam.

8. Focus for a certain amount of time on exam revision and then do a hobby such as play video games or football. If you know how much time you will spend revising you are much more likely to focus and not be distracted during that time period.

9. Find a way to balance revising and other responsibilities. If people like your parents have expectations (of chores, etc) you should stick to what you agreed to because you don't need the extra stress in the period before your exams. Just so long as it doesn’t eat too much into your study time.

10. Finally, think about yourself and what effect the exams could have on you. Be careful about overworking; your study will be affected if you don’t feel well.

Aidan is a student in high school currently sitting his prelims.