The world consists of only two types of students- the Crammers and the Organised.
Cramming, by my definition, is the final act of desperation, the pivotal last minute superhuman effort required to get you through the final hurdle of the examinations in minimum time possible. The rapid short term absorption of information in a finite last minute attempt to consolidate knowledge that would ordinarily take months to learn. It is acute learning, and therefore quickly forgotten. It is not a great way of producing excellent model citizens, groundbreaking lawyers or world changing physicians…but hey, it will get you a Pass!
At some point in your life, all of us, by misfortune or just poor planning, will inevitably succumb to not being as organized as you thought you were, so you will have to endure the experience of cramming.
Here are five top tips for Cramming
- Go for the Money– learn the important stuff first, the central core information . If you have had the audacity to actually ask the examiner what is in the exam and had a few clues, study those bits first. You can still Pass. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Pass first. Worry about distinctions later.
- Short flash Cards– succinct, to the point. No BS. Keep it simple stupid.
- Leave early for the Exam. No amount of cramming will help you if you get caught in a traffic jam and arrive 30 minutes late. Parking is easier. Traffic is better. Park in a discreet spot and take your notes and flash cards for some quiet revision in the car. The best exam I ever did , I arrived at 0400am ,parked under a shady tree and studied like a maniac for four solid hours just before the big test.
- Drink water. Coffee is great. Water is better. – if you are going to pull an allnighter ( that is stay awake all night to study) , at least stay hydrated. Nothing worse than a headache on top of confusion and having a full brain. Make sure you use the bathroom before entering the exam room. Full brain is good. Full Bladder is bad.
- DO NOT PANIC!!! Do your very best with the limited resources you have. Time management at this stage is critical. Be selective and get every mark you can. There is a model of Stress level and performance described by Yerkes-Dodson, which basically states that a level of anxiety or stress actually enhances performance. Harness the energy, but don’t let it destroy you.
- Exam Technique– time management, key bullet points, rehearsal, reading the questions are the most important steps.
The human brain has an amazing ability to absorb vast quantities of information and detail and reproduce it in extreme circumstances. Even the most organized person has a lapse, and a small amount of effort, even at the last minute, can make the difference between Pass and Fail. Cramming is not an ideal way to Study, and the gains are equally Short Term. But the pain of regret , for not even trying, is far worse than the pain of failure.
The most important thing at this point then is Exam Technique which can be learnt as a series of steps and tactics to get you through Exams and tests every Time. No amount of study, short or long term will help , if you have poor exam technique. Learn the Secrets today at theatrewithlegs.com.