Starting to feel nervous? Read on to stay #ExamCalm

green foliage with 'Exam Caklm' text

For many students at Kent, exams are just around the corner. We’ve put together tips and advice from students and staff to help you prepare and remain calm.

The dreaded exam season is here! You may have your tried and tested ways of preparing for exams, or might just be trying to put off thinking about revising at the moment, but however you normally cope, this blog post will give some tips that might help you along the way. You could also take a moment to bookmark the Exam Calm webpage for lots of facilities and activities on campus and online to help you stay calm and connected, and feel prepared and empowered to tackle your exams. 

The advice in this article was provided by guests for the latest edition of the Student Services Podcast ‘Kent Voices’, focusing on all the resources at Kent that could make your exam period a bit easier.

Campus Wellbeing Map

Fresh air will clear your mind and recharge your energies – but do you know the best hidden spots on campus to take a break?

This is a digital map signposting all the relaxation and meditation opportunities that you have around campus, including the Oasis Garden and Bluebell Wood. 

There will be QR codes on a post in each of these locations, which take you to the website where you can log in to access yoga exercises, meditation playlists, and information about nature around you, giving you a chance to switch off and relax. 

Productivity apps/software

You can check out lots of free tools curated by Information Services to assist you in your revision, here are a few we recommend:

  • Microsoft To-Do: Allows you to break down your to-do list into manageable categories.  
  • Flora: Anti-distraction app which builds a virtual garden as long as you don’t pick up your phone. 
  • Habit tracker: Helps you to see your habits and work out what times of day you are most productive. 
  • Pomodoro: Allows you to divide up your time between focus and relaxation. 

Exam Tips 

Kasia Senyszyn (formerly at the Student Learning Advisory Service and now Accessible Information Manager in Student Support and Wellbeing):

“Do not waste time typing up your handwritten notes. It is not an effective revision strategy. If you’re a handwritten notes kind of person and you’ve been taking your notes handwriting this whole time, then that’s the kind of person you are. By all means, write it up on flashcards or mind maps or try to get it into different formats. Remember, this is revision. It’s not you doing your course again. So be selective with what you’re focusing on and what you need to look at.” 

Becky Lamyman (Student Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity Officer in Student Services):

“Remember your brain is like a battery that needs to recharge. Make sure you book in decent mealtimes, where you have time to prepare them and not rely on fast food or takeaways or stuff that you just make with boiling water. Make sure you’re getting time out in the fresh air or exercise or social time. Call your loved ones, call your friends, and have a bit of a chat and switch off, and you will perform better in your revision for it. Some of you will be practising Ramadan during your exam and revision time. If you are, make sure that you look at your nutrition and your health as well. We do have some guidelines on supporting you through that.” 

Lupe Sellei (Vice President of academic experience at Kent Union and former Sports Management student on Medway campus):

“Just making a plan, telling yourself: okay on this day I’m going to revise this, on that week I’m going to revise that. It’s also important not to get discouraged if your studying doesn’t go exactly how you planned it to go. A lot of the time you’re like, oh I couldn’t make this, I missed this bit today, and then everything starts getting delayed. But really, you should focus on powering through.” 

Chilene Nicholls (final year student studying Cultural Studies and Social Anthropology):

“When you’re in the library studying, or at home studying, if you’re like me and you find it quite hard to stay motivated, give yourself rewards. So, if you’ve completed these two topics today, when you’ve completed them, you get to go out with your friends, or stay home and watch a movie. Whatever it is that you enjoy doing. It’s important to have a sleeping schedule as well. Make sure that you’re getting the sleep you need every single night. When you get into bed, read a book or calm down and go to sleep. Sleep is so important.” 

Check out the full Exam Calm podcast, and previous episodes of Kent Voices. If you use social media, look out for the #ExamCalm on new events and help from different University departments.

Written by Charlie Gurr, second year student, on 18.04.22


Really struggling and need crisis support now? Take a look at the Emergency Support page for help at any time.