Welcome, dear reader! Today we are going to focus on what to do the day before the exam and on the day of the exam so that you can achieve the results that reflect your countless hours of studying.
The day before the exam
This is your rest day. Sleep in. Take the day off. Do not spend a minute studying. This day is all about relaxing, clearing your mind and allowing you to be fully focused on your big exam day. Any time spent studying on this day will not add to your knowledge base, it will only leave you with more frantic energy that disrupts your calm mind. Use this day to pack your bags, plan your route, and have everything 100% ready for the next day so that on the actual exam day, your mind is just focused on driving to the venue and actually writing the exam.
Use this day to practise visualisation. Close your eyes and picture yourself writing the exam. Picture yourself executing your exam strategy. Focus on the detail such as reading the questions, identifying the easy marks and picturing yourself sticking to your time allocation. This is beneficial because it helps your brain rehearse what it will do on the exam day, so that in the heat of the exam pressure, your mind is already acting on muscle memory to allow you to not get stuck, but methodically work your way to that passing score.
The day of the exam
Arrive early, get your mind in the zone and then deliver on your exam strategy. Avoid the crowds. Avoid talking to anyone about the exam. Find your spot, take a seat and close your eyes, drowning out the noise and focusing on the exam strategy you visualised. This practice helps get your mind into that flow state to be fully immersed in the exam experience and thus allowing you to ace your exam.
When the exam begins, the first thing to do before you begin writing is to read all the questions to see what is being asked. This allows your mind to be at ease and allows it to look for information to solve that problem within the case study. If you already know what is coming, then you can spend your energy trying to solve it instead of worrying about what questions will still be asked and how many marks they are worth. Remove the uncertainty at the beginning of the exam.
Thereafter you should be looking to identify the easy, medium and hard questions. Do the easy ones first, then the medium ones, then the hard ones. This allows you to get the 50% and then spend all the extra time in the exam to polish that 50% into a 75%.
If you can implement the above suggestions on the exam day, dear reader, then you are well on your way to acing your exams!
Did you know?
Should you be looking for more strategic guidance on how to ace your exams and make studying easier for yourself, feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn and together we can formulate a custom plan to allow you to unlock your full academic potential!
Kamir Arjun CA(SA)
Senior Staff auditor at Deloitte Netherlands