- Revise thoroughly and prepare well in advance for your exam. This will build up your competence and confidence. Additionally, sit as many mock/formative exams as possible so you know what to expect. Try looking for previous exam papers, for example here.
- Use all of your time and go through your answers again and again until the time is up. Enter the exam room with the idea that you will not rush yourself to finish but actually, use all of your time given. Trust me, going over your questions again will save you from making silly mistakes and typos.
- Sleep a minimum of 8 hours the night before. Anecdotally, a good night sleep will improve your concentration levels and help you think straight. By contrast, a lack of sleep will just make you inpatient, irritable and less focused.
- Ear plugs – Unless your exam has a listening part, make sure you bring a pair of ear plugs. Hearing everyone else type or write can be pretty distracting and even annoying. Blocking away the noise around you will help you truly focus on your exam.
- Nutrition and hydration are really important. You don’t want to hear your stomach growling all the way through the exam, nor do you want to be desperate for the loo either. Make sure you eat and drink 1 hour before your exam and always use the loo before your exam is about to start. Bring a small water bottle along to sip on. Also, I find that a chewing gum helps me concentrate and reduces my anxiety, although that is personal opinion only.
- Don’t forget to bring the important bits, such as your campus card, a calculator, a dictionary, a wrist watch (to keep track of the time), your uniform or whatever is required to bring depending on your exam.Good luck with your exams!