Wacky Revision Tips

LAURA GRAYLING banishes revision boredom.

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Ever noticed how some friends  retain a glimmer of hope even as exams set in? They just don’t seem to be inflicted with revision blues.

How do people achieve this mythical state? Quite possibly they’re just weird. But maybe they’ve found a new means to put spice back in Easter term life. Here they share their tips on how to keep things fresh.


Hugh likes to turn revision on its head – literally. When the going gets tough and the books pile high, he flips over and reads upside down. While such an approach is not for the fainthearted, it certainly brings a new perspective to quadratic equations or the complete works of Shakespeare.

Pros: a rush of blood to the head which rivals any that ProPlus can provide.

Cons: not designed for the library. Or indeed, chairs.

Olivia opts for a more sensual approach. Revision need not only evoke the smell of strong coffee and dusty pages. Associating revision topics with a particular smell can act as a much needed memory trigger. Perfume, peanut butter, cherries, you name it – any scent can be associated with key information.

Pros: exploring different scents is constructive procrastination.

Cons: strange looks when you mutter ‘peanut butter’ in the exam.

Hannah’s revision is more Zen. She breaks up work with intensive sessions of chair yoga.  Admittedly Downward Dog and Warrior Two are tricky on a swivel chair, yet yoga has been proven to boost relaxation and increase the flow of oxygen around the body.

 Pros: multitasking at its best as it involves fitness and revision.

Cons: chair yoga is usually reserved for the aged and infirm.

Finally Jack, who prefers a more aggressive method. He psyches himself up pre-revision with boxing videos. What could be more exhilarating than watching oversized buffoons beating other oversized buffoons? You can take this intensive revision warm up even further by playing Chariots of Fire while you turn on your laptop or get your books out.


Pros: with all that testosterone coursing through your veins, who knows what will happen with that sexy librarian.

Cons: you may become so overcome by your prowess that you might accidentally punch the librarian.

My personal favourite is post-it notes. I confess to having a post-it note fetish. These paper gems can take anything from the number of stars in the solar system to quotes from Kafka. Then simply stick them up around you. Kitchen cupboard – stick a post-it on it. Bin lid – post-it. Toilet seat – post-it. Flat mate’s face – post-it. You get the idea.

Pros: effortless revision, providing you’re literate. All you need to do is read and absorb.

Cons: your bedder’s panic when they open your door to find a sea of post-its swamping your belongings.


So there you have it, Cambridge. When you’re revising at 2am for the fifth consecutive night, remember there are ways to put the fun, or at least the bizarre, back into revision.

Don’t settle for late nights in the library interspersed with discount energy drinks and the Facebook brain drain. Spice up your revision life by embracing eccentricity.

Any other tips to combat the boredom? Share your advice in the comment box below.