Monday, March 16, 2009

Tips #4: In Exam

Everyone tackles the exams differently. Some do it slow and steady, some rush through everything and sleep the rest of the time, so do it in parts in a systematic order. I am guilty of doing the exam too fast so much so that I always have to tell myself to slow down to avoid careless mistakes. However, it is good to keep track of your time so that you have enough to time to finish the paper and check your answers.

My method may not be the best, but it is good for me. When I get any paper like English, Sejarah, Biology or Moral that has an essay, I will start the exam by turning to the back to see what are the essay questions. Then, I immediately start thinking of the points to add. Then I scribble down anything at all that comes to my mind at the side. Once I run out of ideas, then I start the front section of short answers, hoping that more ideas would come to mind. This is because essays usually carry the most marks. Watch the time so that you don’t waste time on short questions. Make sure you have enough time to finish the essay. If you feel that you’re running behind time, start the essay question, after that resume the short questions.

Always, always make an outline of your essay. Plan your introduction, order of your points and how you elaborate them. Scribble down phrases, keywords and idioms that you may need to use. For example, if the BM essay is about unity, quickly scribble down idioms like “Bersatu teguh, bercerai roboh” and “Muafakat membawa berkat” and others, so that you have them to use at your disposal.

When writing essays, get to the point. Explain connections, address questions well. My father always said, make every sentence a quality sentence. Avoid using bombastic words, but don’t be afraid to show off your language skills, but only if you have any.

Try to stay for the whole exam. However, if you’ve really done your best and there’s not much that can be done, just stay on! There was a special case last year. There was a Sejarah paper after the English paper. Most people finished the English paper quickly, almost everyone left early. Why? To study for Sejarah, of course! But it depends on the individual.

Most importantly, don’t panic if you don’t know how to do. Stay calm, do another question and then you come back to the one you don’t know. It will come to you soon. If not, then you panic. Don’t forget to bring everything you need, like you pens, pencil, eraser, ruler, calculator, log book, lipstick, water bottle, eye-liner, stapler and liquid paper. And your lucky charms, for good measure.

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