Posted in Intern advice, Written by Ellie

Small Ways to Stay Productive in the Lead up to Exams

For the next six weeks, the road to success will require a lot of focus. It is great to have a revision play to stick to, but outside of that there is time for you to maintain this focus and alleviate some of the pressure from your revision. Here are some small things that could make a big difference to you exam preparation.

  • List three things that you need to do each day and make sure that your schedule allows for them. If you have goals then you have something to aim for. Three is not a big number, and therefore not too daunting. By completing three things each day, you will feel a great sense of achievement and a positive attitude throughout your revision period.


  • Use travelling time to broaden your mind. This may be through listening to a podcast or an audio book. By listening and engaging with something stimulating when you are on your way to/from lectures and the library your mind will feel productive. These things don’t necessarily have to be course-related. Although, if you feel that you do not have enough time to revise everything you need to during your allotted revision times, then one option could be to record yourself talking through your notes so you can listen to them on the move.


  • Be tidy. Mess = Stress. Be active in tidying up after yourself throughout the day. By spending five minutes now, you could save an hour later.


  • Listening to upbeat music. Doing this during the day can help keep your spirits high and your energy levels up.

  • Know when to say no. If you have a lot to get done, then a sneaky trip to the pub is probably not the best idea. It feels great whilst you’re there, but as soon as you’re home wanting to go to bed having not completed enough, you will really regret it. Make sure you stay social, but not at the cost of extra stress due to less time. Save socialising for summer when you’ll be completely free to have as much fun as you want.


  • Make a conscious effort to stay hydrated. Being hydrated keeps you energised and therefore in the best state to be productive.

  • Switch up the format of your revision. Reading and writing is all well and good, but it does get extremely boring. Why not find a YouTube video that explains an aspect of your revision in a more visual way – let someone else do all the hard work for a while!


I hope these suggestions help you to have a truly productive revision season!




We are 301 Student Skills and Development Centre and we give academic skills advice to our students at the University of Sheffield. We offer workshops and 1:1 appointments.

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