Learning Skills

Revision strategies

After learning has taken place, using a variety of revision strategies will help you to become successful in tests/ exams. Remember however that: 


We will remember: 

  • 10% of what we read 

  • 30% of what we hear 

  • 40% of what we see 

  • 50% of what we say 

  • 60% of what we do 


  • 90% of what we see, hear, say and do. Therefore in order to be successful in our revision, we need to vary how we revise. 

Mind Maps


Creating Mind Maps are excellent memory techniques because by using a mixture of colour pictures and imagination with logical and sequential information, you use both sides of your brain. Summarise all your notes and organise them into themes, main ideas and details. 

Spider diagrams

Write the title of the section in the middle of your paper and draw a ring around it. Divide the large section into smaller sub-sections by writing sub-headings around the main word. Use these words as the foundations from which to build your other thoughts around. Recalling certain facts and arguments will lead you to other connected information and ideas. Once you have written all that you can, take a look at your exercise books/ files, revision guides, textbooks and try to establish what has been left out. After refreshing your mind on the information you were already familiar with, your revision session should then be centred on filling the gaps in your knowledge. 

Test a friend


Test your friends on their revision notes and get them to test you too. Talking through previous lessons and what you have learnt will REALLY help you. 

Word Games 


  • Create a tongue-twister to sum up key ideas from a topic e.g. Macbeth murdered many men madly 

  • Create a poem or story using phrases and ideas that need to be remembered 

  • Use a mnemonic e.g. Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain 

  • Create a crossword puzzle of interlocking words that you need to remember 

Imagine YOU’RE the boss


Now you can be the teacher! Imagine you were creating the test paper. Write a list of questions that might come up and try to answer them. Why not create a mark scheme as well – what answers would be awarded FULL marks? 

Hot Potatoes


‘Hot Potatoes’ is a software package that allows you to make six different types of interactive exercises to help you to revise. You can make yourself the following, based on an areas of subjects that you find the most difficult: 

  • Multiple choice quizzes 

  • Short answer quizzes 

  • Jumbled sentence exercises 

  • Crossword exercises 

  • Fill-in-the-blanks exercises 

You can access the software at: http://hotpot.uvic.ca/


Cue cards


Note/ cue cards are always handy when you are out and about. List definitions and rules that you need to know or write key words from which you can fill the gaps to tell the whole story. Cue cards are specifically useful for learning language vocabulary. You can buy index cards from any good newsagent, these can then be cut in half and used on both sides. Once filled in, these cards will allow you to reclaim time that would have otherwise been wasted e.g. on the bus, in the queue at the supermarket etc. Remember to place the key word on one side of the cue card and the definition of the word on the other side. Try also to get your parents, grandparents and friends to say the key word and test you on the definition. 



Audacity is a free piece of software that you can download. Audacity can be used to record revision notes and cut, copy or mix sounds together. Play them back, especially if you are an auditory learner, and listen to your words being said to you as this will solidify your revision. Don’t forget that you can also record your voice onto iPods, iPhones and smartphones so that when you are on the bus with your headphones on, no one will ever know that you are listening back to your class notes rather than the latest tunes. 

Learning strategies 


We all learn differently, and we each have a preferred learning style. During your PSHEE lessons you will have done tests to establish your preferred learning style or you may just know how you learn best. Once this is established, learning in a way that supports your personal preferred learning style will only help you reap benefits! Here are some tips to help:

Tips for Auditory Learners
  • Read your notes out loud 

  • Make a recording of your notes 

  • Make your notes into a rhyme or rap – even better, sing them! 

  • Talk out loud to yourself when you are trying to understand something 

  • Listen to music whilst you are working 

  • Spell out words by making the sounds out loud 

  • Teach other people what you know 

  • Listen to your inner voice. Teach it to say positive things about you and about what you are doing. 

Tips for Kinaesthetic Learners
  • Make a model of the process 

  • Role-play what you have learnt 

  • Do regular brain boosters 

  • Go on field trips and visits to enhance your learning 

  • Use “post-it” notes to write and draw on 

  • Use fingers to count 

  • Doodle whilst listening 

  • Squeeze a stress ball 

  • Try to do some kinaesthetic activities every week e.g. sports, games, gym, arts and crafts, cooking, swimming, cycling, drama, walking 

Tips for Visual Learners
  • Put posters, charts, key words and learning maps on your bedroom wall 

  • Use lots of colour, highlighter pens etc in your notes/ exercise books, especially for key words 

  • Watch DVDs, read books (especially with pictures) and use the internet to help you learn 

  • Develop your listening skills and make sure you take part in practical activities. Don’t just sit and watch! 

Features of a GOOD Revision plan


Make up a timetable whereby you list all the topics for each subject area.


Something like this is good: 

  • Decide which areas which require the most attention and put them into your timetable first and revisit them again later on during your revision period. 

  • Work out how much time before your actual tests. Work backwards and ensure you put in all the areas you need to cover within that time period. 

  • Tick off your work as you complete it. 




  • The morning of your tests/ exams: 

  • Have a good, healthy breakfast 

  • Stick to your normal routine 

  • Use positive self-talk and imagine only positive situations 

  • Leave your home with plenty of time to spare – if using public transport be prepared for any disruptions to the transport service by planning alternative routes in case of disruption



Click here for Year 11 Revision Log