Skills Hub

Planning and using revision time effectively

Revision Timetable

Create a revision timetable starting from now and covering all the weeks until your assessments are released. Making a revision timetable will help you to use your revision time effectively. You can do it by hand, on paper, fixed somewhere you'll see it every day (e.g. above your desk) or digitally in your calendar.

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Make a revision timetable

Download a revision timetable template and create your own revision plan.

Use our questions and suggestions below to help you plan your time effectively.

How many assessments do you have?

Make a note of all your assessments, and the dates you are expecting to receive these. This will help you when planning as you can work backwards from these dates to ensure you fit enough revision time in.


What are the main topics?

For each assessment write down a list of the main topics that could be covered. If you are struggling have a look through Canvas, your module handbook or speak to your classmates.

How confident are you in each topic?

For each topic think about how confident you currently are. Try rating your confidence between 1 and 5 (1=low confidence 5= high confidence). This will help you when planning as you will need to dedicate more time to the topics where you have rated your confidence towards the lower end of the scale.

When are you most productive?

Do you work best in the mornings, afternoons or evenings? Think about the times of day when you are most productive and find it easiest to get motivated. Knowing this will allow you to be more strategic with your schedule and plan to study at times when you are most likely to remember the information.

Include everything in your plan

It is important to block out time for other activities or commitments before trying to schedule study slots. If you have accounted for these in advance, you can schedule around them and make sure your study plan is as realistic as possible. If you have to go to work or have other responsibilities block these out first. You also need to plan time for other activities - exercise, catching up virtually with friends and family and any other activities which help with your wellbeing. Make sure you schedule proper slots to eat too.

Be flexible

It is important not to fill every slot in your study plan. As well as being overwhelming, you also need an element of flexibility - some topics may take longer than you anticipate and other commitments may take up your time too.

  • Aim to revise for short 45-minute sessions followed by a 15-minute break. Include fun stuff/rewards in your break so you will be more likely to stick to your schedule!
  • Keep reviewing what you have revised and testing yourself at the end of the day, the next day and the end of the week. This will help you to recall the information in the exam.

Staying focused

If you are finding it difficult to stick to your timetable - ask yourself why? What is distracting you? (turn off your wifi or phone while you revise). For help with managing your time, visit Dealing with distractions


Planning your time during the assessment period

This is especially important now that your assessments are online as you may have a longer period in which to complete them.

You may have staggered deadlines and time between receiving an assessment and having to submit your response, but that does not mean you should spend the entire time in this period doing extensive research as you might for a piece of coursework, or spend this amount of time writing an answer.

5 step guide to planning your time for assessments

Your school may provide you with more specific guidance on how to spend your time but the following steps provide an example of how you might plan ahead for your assessment period if you had 24 hours to hand in each essay based assessment.

Put in assessment release and submission dates
The first thing to go into your plan should be the dates and times you expect to receive your assessment and the deadlines when these need to be handed in by.

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Add your other essential activities
Add the time you need for work, eating, exercise and other responsibilities you have in your life and be realistic about the time you need to dedicate to these.
You may also have other coursework deadlines to consider

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Add time to write your answer
You may have been provided with timings for how long to spend on actually writing the answer to each question by your tutor, so add that in with enough time before the deadline

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Add some planning time
Put aside some time to plan your answer and go through the notes you have made related to that topic. If you have prepared well in the weeks prior, this should not take too much time.  

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Allow time to proof-read
Take advantage of the time available to proofread your response before you submit it. Try not to leave the submission until the last possible minute and make sure you know who to contact if you have technical issues.

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