Top tips on answering exam questions


If you’re starting to get pre-exam nerves, take a deep breath, don’t panic and follow our top tips when writing your exam answers:

1. Make sure you know where your exam is being held before you leave, they can be in buildings you’ve never even heard of before so you need to know exactly where you’re heading and leave extra time incase you get lost!

2. When you’ve got your paper in front of you, make sure you read all the instructions and questions fully. Once you have read and understood everything, you can begin to decide which order to answer the questions in. You might want to get the most difficult question out of the way first, leaving time to expand on your knowledge for the easier questions, or the other way round. Work how much time you will spend on each question, not forgetting time you’ll have to spend rereading your answers and checking you’ve got everything down.

3. One of the most common complaints from exam markers is that the candidate didn’t answer the question, so before you start it might be a good idea to make a mini plan so you won’t be tempted to steer off course. Underlining key words and phrases in the question can help to direct your answer, whilst identifying the main issue provides a brilliant reference point throughout.

4. Don’t forget to include references to theorists or pieces of literature which can support your answer. Jotting these down as soon as you turn the exam paper over will remind you to add them in when they’re useful. If you realise you’re running out of time, pick one point and back it up with enough evidence to show the marker that you at least know your stuff. If you don’t have enough time for this, revert to bullet points.

Good luck students of Liverpool!