How-to: Our tips for a great IB Mock Exam Mindset!

A student taking an exam

It’s (unfortunately) that time of year again, where IB mock exams and target grades start to become a lot more relevant. Today, we’ll run through our top tips of how to get in the right mindset to smash those exams out of the park!

Work backwards

Step one is of course knowing which mocks you have when – which hopefully your teachers will have told you. Add these in to your planner/calendar right away. Next, you need to add in time slots for revision.

You can put your prioritisation skills in to practice. Starting with the last exam, start to work backwards to today’s date. Schedule fewer sessions for those subjects you’re doing better in, and vice versa. Mocks are important, but not the be-all-and-end-all, so you can afford to revise like this. The number of sessions will also depend on the content for the exam – if in doubt, ask your peers or teacher for a list of the relevant topics.

Once this planning is out of the way, it’s just a case of sticking to it to the best of your abilities. Don’t beat yourself up if you have to skip a session here and there, or reschedule. It’s important not to be too rigid in your planning, especially for mocks. After all, you’re busy enough as it is, right?!

Pace yourself

As with most things in life, it’s key to pace yourself and take enough breaks. You might be a fan of the Pomodoro technique (to find out more, click here): This is a good way to study for as long as possible whilst remaining effective, making sure to reward yourself with some all-too precious dopamine between the cycles.

Keep it dynamic

If you are doing multiple study sessions on the same day, don’t just stick with one subject. Keep it fresh by staggering: If you decide to do 4 hours of Maths revision this week, split that up in to 3 or 4 separate study sessions. This ensures you don’t get bored or complacent, where the content won’t actually be absorbed properly.

Manage yourself

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to the amount of revision you do (sadly), so it’s important to listen to yourself. Keep sleep as a priority in the weeks running up to exams, and avoid the infamous all-nighter. If you decide to, then your performance for an exam on the following day will likely be strongly impacted, including the amount of content you’re able to recall. To find out more about this, take a look at this article here.

Remember: They’re only mocks!

At the end of the day, these are only mocks. Do as well as you can, put as much effort in as is feasible, but if you aren’t able to revise as much as your classmates, you really shouldn’t worry. There’s always still time to improve afterwards.

Try to see the IB mock exams as an opportunity to try out your exam skills without as much pressure. It’s useful to think of them in a similar sense to final exams, as a kind of ‘dress rehearsal’ for the real thing. Always keep in mind, though, that they are really just that: A practice to see where you’re at right now.

So, ultimately, prioritise taking care of yourself, don’t be too harsh if it doesn’t all go to plan, and remember that there’s still plenty of time for things to get better!

If you’d like an extra bit of assistance with any of your subjects, Lanterna is here to help! You can take a look at our 1-to-1 Online Tuition offering here, all provided by top IB graduates who have been in exactly your position!

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