Whether you are a professional working towards a new qualification, or a student cramming for your end of year exams, iMindMap is the ultimate tool to help you kill it in the exam room.
#Tip 1: Map out a revision timetable
To ensure that you don’t spend too much time focused on one topic, start by mapping out a revision timetable. Allow yourself enough time for each topic and make sure all areas are covered. Mind Maps provide a great visual overview of your revision plan and you can put this on the wall to refer to and track your progress.
Quick tip: Make your revision time even more productive by aiming to work for 45 minutes per session and allow yourself lots of short breaks. This will heighten your brain’s capacity to concentrate and comprehend information.
#Tip 2: Bite size key points are easier to digest & spark associations
A Mind Map allows you to extract the ideas from your head and put them into something visible and structured. Instead of writing reams of linear notes, create a Mind Map for each topic you need to revise. Your central idea should represent the topic, and the main branches represent the key areas. Try using only one word per branch; this will make your map easier to remember and your brain will automatically make associations that are connected to the key word. So, when you are sat in that exam room picturing your revision Mind Map, the keywords will spark a map of associations enabling you to remember a lot more than you ever imagined you could.
#Tip 3: Use Mind Maps to take notes in class
This one is a no brainer – if you use Mind Maps to take notes in the first place, you will save heaps of time during the revision period! You can then avoid the sinking feeling of having to go back through piles of old notes and forgetting what they were about in the first place. Whilst your classmates are furiously scribbling down everything the teacher says, you can calmly sit back and build up a Mind Map of the key points. Your clearly structured map will make a lot more sense than their illegible lines of scribbles afterwards!
#Tip 4: Testing your knowledge
To check that you have memorised your subjects, create a new Mind Map with only the main topic branches, and then try to fill in the rest from memory. You should find that you have remembered more than you expected, and maintained the connections between ideas – ideal for answering exam questions! In iMindMap, you can use the Expand and Collapse feature to hide and reveal branches to test yourself.
A study conducted in 2002 showed that Mind Mapping improved the long-term memory of factual information in medical students by 10%. The research by Farrand et al, illustrated that “Mind Maps provide an effective study technique when applied to written material” and are likely to “encourage a deeper level of processing for memory formation”.
#Tip 5: Mind the gap
Mind Maps allow you to drill deep into every aspect of your revision. As your revision gets under way you will start to add more branches, links and notes to your Mind Maps. The limitless canvas in iMindMap gives you the freedom to add as many branches as you need without the restricted dimensions of a piece of paper. With all of your revision clearly mapped out, you can visually identify where the gaps in your knowledge are. Simply look for the emptiest parts of your Mind Map and you’ll know where you need to focus more time and effort in your revision.
#Tip 6: Visual thinking
The visual nature of Mind Mapping promotes better understanding and engagement. The colour, symbols, images and organic structure all appeal to what the brain naturally likes to work with. Mind Maps are, in fact, an image in themselves; a colourful picture of your revision topic. This is why your brain can process the information in a Mind Map significantly better in comparison to linear notes – you think in images, not text. Print out your Mind Maps, ideally in colour and on A3 size paper. This way you can put them up around your home and repeatedly test your brain every time you walk past them.
Quick tip: Images are easier to remember than text, and spark richer associations, so include lots of images in your Mind Maps!
#Tip 7: Incubate your revision
Your brain performs at it’s best at the beginning and the end of your study period. That’s why if you study for long periods of time without having a break, you will find you are much less effective and remember far less of what you’ve revised.
However, by having lots of regular, short breaks, you are creating more ‘beginnings’ and ‘endings’. This will dramatically improve your brain’s ability to absorb and retain the information you are studying.
Plus, breaks make you more refreshed, rested and give your brain a chance to incubate what you have just studied and form more associations. It is during your breaks when your brain brings together all the information that you have collected and forms a ‘big picture’, giving you a fuller understanding of that particular concept.
#Tip 8: Last minute review
It is true that you should not leave revision to the night before. However, you tend to remember things that have happened more recently with more clarity. Review your summary Mind Maps just before you go into your exam – the first thing you remember in your exam will usually be the last thing you revised. As soon as you get into your exam, sketch a quick Mind Map on a piece of paper, with the key words from your revision map; so your brain can recall the relevant information and retrace the associations more easily.
By revising with iMindMap not only is your revision faster and less stressful, but you can also achieve better results. Our tried and tested Mind Mapping technique has helped thousands of students achieve their goals.
Don’t forget, you can download the 7 day free trial of iMindMap Ultimate today:← Don Taylor’s journey with Mind Maps 9 tips for creating a winning product plan using Mind Maps →