Revising history

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Revising history

There's an awful lot to learn in a history A level, A/S level or A2 level.

You need to have a considerable bank of knowledge in your memory to take into the examination hall, and you also need to have mastered essay writing skills and skills of handling documents.

One big mistake that some students make is to think that if they read through their notes, this will be enough to get them through the exams. This is not so. There's a big difference between knowing facts and recognising them.

Here are some useful hints on how to revise:

  • Make a timeline of events and put it up in your bedroom.
  • Make a list of events, cut them up and then try to put them in to chronological order and date them.
  • For remembering personalities, try writing a 'This Is Your Life' script for them.
  • Use flow charts and spider diagrams.
  • Try to reduce your notes to one side of paper for each topic.

No matter how much you know, it isn't going to help if you cannot write under pressure. In most A level papers you will be required to answer a documentquestion and write three essays, all in the space of 3 hours.

It is, therefore, very important that you practise writing to a time limit. Give yourself 40 minutes to write essays at home. This gives you an extra 5 minutes to check through your work. The more of these that you do, the more confident you will feel about writing under pressure, and to time limits.

Also, practise writing essay plans. Try doing some of these once you have finished revising a topic. It's a good idea to get hold of as many past papers from your teacher as possible, so that you have a good idea of the types of questions you will be set, and you will become more familiar with the layout of the paper.

And finally, don't forget those document questions! Again, practise as manyof these as you can, remembering to give yourself time limits.