If you are a student that has an exam coming up in the next three, two one month you are in the right place. In this “Last minute study hacks” method we focus on how to manage time and maximize productivity in the short term.
When we have an exam coming everyone including our teachers, lecturers, parents saying that prepare for the exam now or you’ll regret later. Manage your time and make time for your studies. But most of the time we addicted to procrastination and we begin to study for the exam just before a month, two or three at most when we had a year or more for preparation. In this type of scenario, we have to study extremely hard and learn all things done in a year in less than 2 or 3 months. In some cases less than one month.
So today I am giving you a method that I used to overcome in a similar situation. I have to remind you that even though this method is proven to be successful, preparing early and studying everyday lessons every day is far more productive and less stressful.
Step 1: Every hour is a study hour plan
First, you have to declare that all 24 hours in the day are study hours. Every other thing you do including sleeping, eating, bathing, browsing the internet as a waste of time. You may wonder is that even possible? Remember you are in a desperate situation and you need desperate measurements to overcome. (that doesn’t mean you have to get rid of sleeping and eating hours) Even If you committed to studying in every possible time of your day, you realize that day gone by without enough tasks done. That’s why I come up with this “Every hour is a study hour plan”.
Open Microsoft word( or alternative) and make a table of 24 rows and 3 columns. 24 rows for the 24 hours in our day. The first column represents time. The second column represents the subject and the third column represents the description. It should look like this.
You need one sheet a day. If you have 2 months for the exam print out 60 of these sheets.
The next step is you have to write what you do in your day in this sheet. Let’s just say you did the mathematics between 6.00 am-7.00 am. That means you did math in the 7th hour. So write what you did in the 7th hour on the sheet with a little bit of description. It looks like this
If you didn’t do anything related to studying highlight it with a bright highlighter and state in the description why you didn’t study. It could be sleeping, eating, watching Netflix or youtube, social media, going to the gym or hanging out with friends At the end of the day you’ll get a completed sheet that reflects your day.
Step 2: Realize Yourself
Just withing 3 or 4 days into this procedure you are gonna realize that you waste a lot of time and you only study for 3 or 4 hours max a day. Once you realize the reasons for the waste time you have to come up with solutions that specifically for you to maximize the day. Because there’s no point an outsider giving you study hacks or tricks if you don’t have enough time to study,
Be creative and come up with your own plan to maximize your study time and productivity.
Important: Don’t try to change too much. Because you have only about 2 months for the exam or less. It takes 66 days to install a habit that feels normal. For example, if you are a morning bird don’t try to change it to a night owl because you think you’ll get time. It gets worse. Try to maximize your time by cutting down Netflix, youtube and internet browsing and taking lesser time for eating and bathing time.
With this “Every hour is a study plan” I maximize my time from 4 to 14 hours a day. Hope you also find creative methods to maximize your time.
Step 3: Maximize Your Study Time Productivity
It’s great to have enough time to study but what happens if you don’t use them productively. Sometimes you’ll get stressed out in between sessions. Sometimes you have to read the same concept again and again because you thought you understand a concept but after a while, you can’t apply it. There are two techniques to overcome these types of situations.
I have written two long articles about each technique. You are welcome to read those two articles but it’s not necessary(especially when you have an exam coming up soon). The core concept of these techniques has been described below.
The Pomodoro Technique
The core of this technique is you study only for 25 minutes and take 5 minutes break. This 25 minutes known as a Pomodoro Session. After 3 or 4 sessions you take a longer break of 20-30 minutes. This method helps you to work intensively because you have only 25 minutes to work on. It also helps you to relax in between sessions and it also helps the brain to retrieve information effectively.
Next time you study break it down to 25 minutes of study sessions, not a 3-hour cram study. In between breaks don’t browse the internet or watch Netflix that addictive. Listen to classical or baroque music, take a walk. Do something that less addictive. Otherwise, your 5-minute break will be 2 hours.
Important: Remeber that 25 minutes is not necessary. The idea of this technique is to give the brain enough time to retrieve information while you relax( According to Brain Chemistry). But neurochemistry highly recommend to keep a Pomodoro session between 25-50 minutes
The Feynman Technique
The problem with most of the students is they either cannot understand a concept in their syllabus or couldn’t memorize it enough for the required standard.
” If you want to master something, teach it” is the philosophy behind this technique. So when you study don’t just read it and memorize or understand. Try to teach the concept or theory to somebody as simple as possible. The best person to teach is you. After studying a concept, take a pen and paper and write down the concept you learn in that paper as simple as you can. Compare it to the original note. If you couldn’t explain a part or missed a part that means you didn’t understand the concept properly. Study again until you can explain everything.
You may feel this method takes time. Yes, it is. But what’s the point of studying if you can’t understand or memorize the concept. This Feynman Technique proven to be highly successful and it helps you to put things into long term memory.
The last-minute study hacks method is proven to be a highly successful method. It covers all the areas to succeed in the short term including time management and study productivity. Hope you find this method effective and efficient. Next time prepare for the exam early. It’s less stressful and productive. Best of luck with your Exam!