Exams: tips and tricks from a Russian student.

The exam season is upon us and I’m here to share some tips and tricks on how to study, motivate yourself and relax during this stressful but necessary time of the year. Exams at university may differentiate from your school experience, the same as in school we have two exam periods: first in January and second in end of May-June. However, the main difference between school and university exams is the way they are graded and what we are tested on. It, of course, depends on your module, but some of your exams will only weight 50% of your total mark and as a result, we only get a percentage, not an overall grade. Another difference is the material covered, you may realise that you have to do more self-studying than just going through your lecture notes. It is also important to remember that you are not alone and you will always find help if you need it.

“Trust yourself, you know more than you think you do” – Benjamin Spock

Here are some tips on how you can prepare for your upcoming exam:

№1 Don’t stress stress will not help you. Stressing out will not help you study, it will only worsen it.

№2 Plan, Plan, Plan– planning your work is crucial! This will help you balance your time and organise your work.

№3 Ask for help– either your friends, course mates or your lecturers. It is important to seek help when you need it, don’t hesitate to email your tutors and lecturers about certain topics or questions that you don’t get.

№4 Practice– do some past papers and review some revision questions. You have learned your material, so now put it into practice. Doing some revision questions will prepare you for the upcoming exam.

It is also important to look after yourself during this stressful time of the year. Always remember that these are just exams, they are here to test your knowledge that you’ve gained during this semester. Here are some tips on how to stay calm and healthy:

1 Exercise– either going to the gym or simply taking a short walk around campus. Going outside to breathe some air will help you to ease your stress and relax your mind. Going to the gym will help you with the anxiety that you may go through.

№2 Eat healthy– I know that you don’t have time to cook proper and healthy meals every day during exam season but try to have at least one nutritious meal a day. Cook your favourite comfort food ( my personal favourite is pasta with salmon), you need to eat something that brings your comfort. Please forget about takeout or instant meals!

3 Hugs anyone?– I don’t know how about you, but I love hugs especially when I’m stressed. During this exam season, I was asking my friends and flatmates to hug me, this helped me to de-stress.

№4 Hanging out with your friends– I’m not talking about going to the parties or pubs, but having a break with your friends between your studies is a good and healthy distraction. Remember you can’t study 24/7 it is neither productive nor healthy.


Now, this day has come to reveal your full potential, make sure you sleep well and get at least 6 hours of sleep, don’t pull any all-nighters at the library. You need to give your brain a rest so it can perform its best on the exam. If your exam starts in an afternoon you can come earlier and review your revision notes, but do not panic right before an exam, remaining calm before and during an exam will help your brain to concentrate. Prepare a clear pencil case, water bottle and don’t forget your student ID.

You are good to go! Best of luck with your exams, I’m sure that everyone will do great in their exams! Believe in yourself and hope for the best, you have done enough revision and you deserve a good mark. Я хочу пожелать всем удачи с экзаменами, у вас все получиться. Помните что вы сделали все возможное чтобы хорошо написать этот экзамен вы все можете и у вас все получиться. Пусть удача улыбнется вам и натолкнет на правильный ответ. Я держу за вас кулачки и всем удачи!