For most of us, spring is a favourite time of year. The weather is getting warmer and drier; we can get back outside to enjoy sports or just walking and listening to the sounds of nature. But some of you will not be heading outdoors just yet because spring is also the traditional time for … exams!
Whether it’s GCSEs and A-Levels, the Baccalaureate, your PhD Viva, a Piano exam or your driving test, hopefully you are well-prepared already. A little nervousness is normal (and, according to research, even helpful) but nobody likes to feel stressed or overwhelmed. Our colleagues here at Cochlear have taken a few exams in their time, so we did a mini-poll around the office and here are our top six tips for keeping your cool at exam time:
I always tried to travel to my exam with friends. It helped me keep a clear head. For a foreign language exam, we would chat in the language and prepare our brains for thinking in that language. But often we’d just talk about something else entirely to try and relax.
(For exams that involve speaking, viewing and listening, take your Mini Microphone to best hear the examiner or your TV Streamer if there will be recordings to view.)
I’m dyslexic so my tip is to make audio notes. You could always tell if I had exams coming up because, you’d find me with my headphones on!
(Remember if you have a Wireless Phone Clip, you can use it to stream audio directly to your sound processor.)
Put new batteries into your sound processors. Tell the exam invigilator that you have hearing loss and request that they confirm you have heard and understood any instructions.
Choose comfortable clothes and remember to take a drink and something to eat, especially if it’s a long exam.
(Note: some exam centres don’t allow any labelled food in the room, so think ahead and take plain fruit and bring water in a clear, unlabelled bottle.)
I’m not a morning person so, when I have an exam, I set my alarm at least 30 minutes early to make sure I have plenty of time for breakfast and to leave home early enough.
I took a lot of sports exams at school and that was before we had Aqua+ so sometimes I couldn’t wear my sound processor. For anyone who’s doing sports or anything like that now, I’d say take your Aqua+. Oh, and don’t forget your glasses. I can’t remember how many times I had to call my parents to come and drop my glasses off for me!
As with anything, good preparation will help you to stay calm and perform your best. The tips above will help and remember your A B C:
Above all, good luck!
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