11 Apr 2013

Example of How to Create a Revision Checklist

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Exams are looming. It's time to marshal your forces, strengthen the line and call in reinforcements.

Create Your Battle Plan
Has your teacher given you a revision checklist - of all the areas you need to learn for the exam? If not, use the specification from your exam board to make one - it's normally printed in a long list which should look strangely familiar.

Grade each area out of 10 to show your strongest, and weakest areas. Revise the lowest scored areas first, but be realistic. You won't ever score 10/10 on all topics unless you're a straight A* grade student. At GCSE, normally, 70% is good enough for an A (80% for IGCSE). Aim for an 8/10 average over all topics to give yourself the best chance of an A therefore.

Use Mind Maps
Find some examples here specifically for Business, and some for other subjects. This method works brilliantly, including for language vocab.

If You Were Thinking You Can't Revise English
You can, but not from the specification; it's too vague. Become familiar with plot events, but focus on theme, interpretations of character and how they change and detailed language analysis techniques for each text studied. Studying model essays is a big help. Find likely exam questions for most GCSE texts here. If you've got a closed book exam, you need to learn a good spread of short quotations. Use acronyms like STILTS to help you remember what to write about in a poetry essay.

Top Tip
If you've scored a revision area less than 4/10, you will probably score less than 40% if you do practice papers (or the real thing). You need to learn the material before you do the practice papers. Feel free to write an essay answer - with your books open in front of you. It's a great way to learn. Then mark your own work with the mark scheme.

Before you can do this though, you need to work out how much time you have between now and the exam, and how many other subjects you need to revise. How fast do you need to work and how much time do you have to spend on each topic?

Don't forget or ignore your high-scored areas or subjects. You need to refresh these too.

Colour code each area as you revise them to make sure you cover the checklist thoroughly (as below).

Get more revision tips here, or read my article about revision in The Huffington Post.

The example below is a work in progress of Business Studies AS Level Revision for AQA BUS 2. We made the checklist using the exam specification and are colour coding it as we go along. Purple is for topics we've revised. Red is for areas that are ready to do practice papers on. We use the textbook to make mind-maps for each area.

Revision Checklist

Topics to Target (as taken directly from the specification)

Finance Management in Practice  Ready To Do EXAM PRACTICE
(1) Budgets: setting budgets for employees
(2) Improving Cash Flow +we’ve done some on cash flow before
(3) Measuring and Increasing Profit

People in Business
(4) Improving Organizational Structure
Recruitment, Selection, Training*?  productivity, labour turnover, measures of performance

Motivation: Theory and Practice DONE BUT Ready To Do EXAM PRACTICE

Operations Management
Operational Decisions (targets, capacity utilisation, production and demand) EXAM PRACTICE DONE ON THIS ONE AREA
(6) Quality (control, assurance, standards) POSTER
(7) Customer Service
(8) Suppliers
(9) Technology in Operations

Marketing and the Competitive Environment
Effective Marketing (purpose, niche, mass)
(10) Using the marketing mix (product: development, USP, portfolio analysis, life cycle)
Promotional mix
Pricing (loss leaders, psychological pricing, price leaders (leading brand), price takers, price skimming, penetration)
(11) Place

Marketing and Competitiveness