20 effective revision strategies

Last updated: 12/04/2022

Drawing on evidence and research from cognitive science, Jake Hunton shares 20 highly effective ideas for revision for KS4-5 students. Includes ideas for recall, elaborative interrogation and spaced retrieval which can be adapted to work in all subjects. 

Example revision strategies from the resource: 

The power of three: free recall. Use free recall tests (otherwise known as ‘brain dumps’) as a revision strategy, by practising bringing information to mind three times. Get a revision guide and read the content on a page. Close the revision guide and write out in your own words everything you can recall. Next, open the revision guide again, take a different coloured pen, and amend or add in anything that isn’t correct or missing in your notes. Put your notes away and close your guide. Then on another piece of paper, repeat, and repeat again three times. 

Try the Leitner method. Make 20 flashcards with key terms and definitions. Label three boxes: ‘Every day’, ‘Tuesday and Thursday’, ‘Friday’:

  • Start your revision on Monday and read the definitions. If you recall each definition perfectly, pop it in the Tuesday and Thursday box. If not, pop it in the ‘Every day’ box.
  • On Tuesday, take out cards from the ‘Every day’ box and recall the definitions. If they’re perfect, pop them in the ‘Tuesday and Thursday’ box. If not, pop them back in the ‘Every day’ box.
  • Then take cards out of the ‘Tuesday and Thursday’ box and recall the definitions. If they’re right, then pop them in the ‘Friday box’. If not, pop them in the ‘Every day’ box.

On Wednesday and Thursday go through all of the boxes, with any you get right going into the Friday box and any that are incorrect going back into the ‘Every day’ box.

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I am going to use this to help my students with their study habit development and revision strategies for reflection. Thanks, great work.

Berrin Yurdakul

21/10/2020

5

07/09/2020

I am going to use this to help my students with their study habit development and revision strategies for reflection. Thanks, great work.

Berrin Yurdakul

21/10/2020

5

07/09/2020