Key Word Listing

Writing resumes isn’t for everyone. Some people feel that it takes too long and that it doesn’t really benefit their studying in a major way. Obviously it all depends on the person; whether they are able to write quickly, resume chapters efficiently and keep their summaries organised and easy to read.

If you don’t possess these abilities, then maybe resuming isn’t for you. Instead I would suggest another effective method of study, one that I use on a regular basis, when I just don’t have the time to spend on my resumes.

Key word listing. The concept is simple. As you are reading through your notes and books, keep an eye out for words and phrases that define the information. They might be scientific terms, the name of a process or theory, the denomination of a species, a series of dates or maybe new words in another language. These words and phrases, that you’ve chosen, need to be listed on a sheet of paper. When you feel that the entire content of your course material can be summarised or used to describe at least one of the terms on your list, then you just put it to one side and continue to study however you see fit.

The day before the exam, when you’re completing your last bit of revision and flicking over things you already know (hopefully!), now is the time to pull out your key word list and give it a once over. Without consulting your notes, test yourself to see if you can explain everything on your list. Those things you struggle to recall are the things you should probably work on a bit more.

I’ve found this method to be very effective, as it forces you to try and bring to mind the things you have learnt, instead of just re-reading the teacher’s notes over and over again. I think it helps you to describe things in your own words, which ultimately is what makes it easier to remember in the exam.

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