Exam preparation and performance can be time consuming and confusing if you don't have the right skills, techniques and tips for doing well. With simple exam preparation skills, by the time you enter the exam, you will be in a position to excel and get the best grade you are capable of. Knowing what is important, revising on relevant topics and doing practice exams are all fundamentally important study tips for exams.

Download Math Courses for National Exam

Know criteria
This means knowing what the key areas of assessment are and the proportion of marks for each question. Look at your course guide and talk to your teachers to find out this information, so as to allocate the right amount of time in the exam and for exam preparation. From this information you should be able to map out what you need to be focusing on and which questions needs more time. Knowing the criteria and study questions will give you a basic orientation to excel in college exams.

It is a good idea to start revision at least two weeks before the examination. Participate in study groups to better understand what is required and revise the key areas more effectively. Learn specific areas to be assessed to teach to your study group. This will minimize the time you spend revising and orient you in the best way for the exam. Meet with your study group as often as you can.... once every 3-4 days is a good start but it does depend on your learning style and study preferences.
Create a cheat sheet approximately 1-1.5 pages in length, so as get the bare essentials of the examination area. Remember to be concise in preparing your cheat sheet. It should only jog your memory and orient you in study. How you design and adapt your cheat sheet should depend on your study style.

Practice exams are vital in making the best of your ability and revision sessions. Do practice exams in real time so as to practice under the time and stress conditions of the actual event. Be sure to go over your practice exams to review areas of concern.



When do you start preparing for school entrance exams? Structured preparation for one year before the exams is a good idea. Carefully paced preparation over a 12 month period should be sufficient, without running the risk of your child becoming bored or 'over prepared'.
Opinions vary on whether children should be intensively coached to maximise their performance in entrance exams. Some favour the view that the selection process should be based on 'natural ability', and others believe that every available resource should be applied to ensure an offer from a first choice school. The majority of parents' opinions fall somewhere between the two extremes, feeling that at least some degree of preparation is both appropriate and beneficial for their children, in the period leading up to entrance exams. At the end of the day, everyone should make an informed decision about what is right for their child, and their particular circumstances.
Children who are already in the independent school sector will more than likely receive suitable preparation at school.
Find out the format of the exams for the particular school you are applying to
Obtain specimen papers or past papers from the school, if they are available
Otherwise, obtain suitable practice papers and/or workbooks for your child to work through
Ensure your child is familiar with the vocabulary used in the specimen papers, past papers and practice papers
Make sure that your child practices with a wide variety of question types
Make sure your child understands the difference between short questions where only an answer is needed, and long questions where makes are awarded for method and workings, not just a final answer
Discuss timing with your child. If a paper is one hour in length and there is a maximum of 100 marks available, that means about 36 seconds per mark as a rough guide
Encourage your child to take extra care with spelling and punctuation
Word games, puzzles and logic problems can be a fun way to practice logical thinking and broaden vocabulary
Mental arithmetic skills are extremely useful. Children should know tables up to 12 reliably, and be able to add and subtract at least 3 digit numbers quickly and accurately.
Whatever style of preparation you opt for, the key to making the exams and the selection process less stressful is for both you and your child to know what to expect. Get as much information from the school as you can, in plenty of time. Many independent schools now require applicants to register and pay an administration fee at least one year before planned entry. The school will normally provide quite a detailed description of how an assessment day or exam day is structured. Claudine M Smith is a Maths tutor with over 12 years experience of tutoring children for common entrance and independent school entrance exams, as well as KS2 SAT, GCSE, IGCSE and A Levels. For more information and advice about preparing for entrance exams and Maths tuition you can visit http://witneymathstutors.co.uk