Revision Tips


but … if you are stuck in your learning, why not sit and relax – let your brain wander for a while but never procrastinate.  Putting things off becomes a habit of mind.

Learning how to learn

Dr Oakley knows first-hand how it feels to struggle with numeracy.  Dr Oakley struggled with maths and science courses in school.  When she enlisted in the US army she saw that her inability to master maths and science was holding her back.  She returned to school and was determined to master the subjects which had given her so much trouble.  She has given advice about learning how to learn and here’s wotworks for us in terms of offering revision tips to learners:

Think about why you are reading the text

Think about what you have to do e.g. name, describe, list pros and cons, evaluate

Limit your time say to 25 minutes then test yourself and rest for 5 minutes (use the timer on your phone, tablet or watch)

Make powerpoint or keynote revision notes

Start by highlighting key words or sentences.  If that doesn’t work then read, look away and see what you can remember.

Use different colours for pros and cons

Keep to the same colour system

Use mind maps or make bullet lists

This means you transform what you have highlighted, or what you can remember, into a mind map, a bulleted list or notes

Read aloud to yourself or someone else


There are three aspects to memory

  1. Make the memory                                                                                           memory
  • be active and have a purpose


  1. Store it
  • make associations
  • make links
  • use pictures
  • use colours
  • use words


  1. Retrieve it
  • do past paper questions
  • write an essay
  • tell someone else
  • teach someone else
  • Facetime someone else
  • video yourself
  • use key cards to make summaries
  • summarise things on large post it notes
  • stick notes onto the door or wall
  • pace about and talk to yourself while you bounce a ball

Understanding alone is not enough – you need repetition and you need to test yourself.  Make time to exercise – it definitely helps.  Watch Dr Oakley’s Ted Talk about learning how to learn.



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