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IB may exam stress

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Hello, so my may exams are coming up and honestly I'm pretty stressed out. I have already started studying but I'm really concerned about Biology HL! I try to study it each day and I'm afraid that I won't have time to look over it twice or something. My teacher is also giving us a bio test next week and it makes studying for the exam and the test hard at the same time. I'm scared of doing bad on these exams as I have conditional offers from Uni's in Canada. How do I manage my stress and relax.

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Hey there! :D
First of all, make a study schedule. It will make you feel more organised and actually see that you got plenty of time left. Also, don't see the bio test next week as an 'obstacle' to studying for exams but rather as an opportunity to start off your revision with biology which you are most concerned about and actually test yourself! However, i would recommend revising for 2 subjects per day since spending the day studying for one subject seems a little boring and you can get easily tired. Of course this is just my opinion and you should find what way works best for you. Moreover, study tips like flash cards, mind maps etc might work for you.
The biggest tip is to START! Not tomorrow, NOW!
Best of luck (Y)

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1 hour ago, Zangetsu said:

My schedule is to study from 11 in the morning to about 8/9 in the night.

Well, this is not very realistic...You will not be studying for 10 hours per day! Aim for 6-8 hours of revision with breaks between, which is much more likely to happen. Also what i meant about creating a study schedule, is deciding which topics to cover each day.

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My strategy for the tests that we take during revision time is to just revise the topics that will be in the test. Since I've planned out my revision 2 months prior to the exams, I basically have to readjust my study plan every day, but I have an overview of what needs to be done still. So maybe do that? Or just don't focus on the test at all -- it won't count towards your IB grade, so your score is unimportant. It's just one more practice paper you're doing in class instead of at home.

Good luck!

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(Long answer below)

My strategy for revising tests, especially Biology (gosh it's a very difficult subject), is to know what you are confused at. For example, I do not understand respiration (all those cycles), I will put more time on it, writing my own set of notes, then reading it in free time. Biology is not a subject that you should be spending 10 hours on, stressed and keep on reading will not help for this subject, it will make you hate this entire subject. 

My advice: if you take 1.5 hour per day to revise for Biology, then doing exercise right after you revise each and little bit of section, you will not be as stressed. Taking breaks is essential for you to absorb your knowledge. As AnastasiaVr has mentioned about studying 2 subjects a day,  my IB finals are coming and I usually study 2-3 subjects per day, I cannot study for Biology for 4-5 hours straight. The most important strategy in revising Biology is for you to love it and understand all the mechanisms at the same time. 

16 hours ago, Zangetsu said:

My schedule is to study from 11 in the morning to about 8/9 in the night.

You are doing more than me to prepare for IB Finals everyday. It is not realistic to cram everything everyday for 10 hours. I will not suggest this strategy at all :(

If you have an exam, jotting notes will be vital. Reading materials and fully understand it is the key to Biology HL 7. Let me give you heads up on what methods or strategies that you can use or might find this useful, don't be really stressed seeing all those names down there.(Each topic has different ways to combat)

Flashcard methods will be useful in these topics:

  • DNA Transcription, Replication, Translation enzymes involved in all different reactions(HL)
  • Ecology (Domains, Kingdoms, Phylums, Classes for chordata [HL only], Phylums for plants ) **
    • To memorize all those classification, print out some pictures of animals, plants to have a fun game with
  • Mitosis vs Meiosis (diagrams especially independent assortment and crossing over)

Drawing method will be useful for: 

  • Respiration (Kreb Cycle)
  • Photosynthesis  (Calvin Cycle)
  • Genetics (Also I will suggest finding some online practices to look at the genetic diagram, then doing punnett square)
  • Movement (HL)
  • Plant Science (Identifying Stem)

All the topics that I didn't mention above, try jotting down main points on papers, keep it in a binder / notebook and reread it in your freetime. My favorite Biology teacher also opens a platform for us to jot only 10 points for each topic, so we can remember it easily by rereading it before the exam.

Each subtopic a day (not one big big big chapter), don't stress yourself, stay healthy and happy :) 

Wishing you all the best in your biology exam. <3 There are a lot of people out there struggling with Biology too, but those who truly get a high mark win by understanding all the concepts and be able to recall it so easily in the exam.  If you have any questions, I will be happy to share with you because right now i am like stressed too for biology.

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Honestly though 10 hours on the weekends is just not realistic and will just make you more stressed. You risk burning out. Instead take lots of breaks (counterintuitive but helpful actually!) I'm also taking HL Bio and I also have several Canadian acceptances. If you are lucky enough to be accepted, then you are practically in! Canadian unis are not known for retracting acceptances, and even after you are accepted conditionally, you don't have to maintain the same average . They are ok with you slipping up a bit.

P.S what unis and for what programs? If you have specific questions I might be able to answer them

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Hope everyone is doing well with their Bio HL Exams! I started studying for it 4 weeks in advance and covered around 1 unit every 2 days or so. Since it's my 2nd or 3rd time going through the content, it's more reviewing rather than memorizing and it goes a lot faster.

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Well you have to be consistent in your work- try and make revision packets per subject and keep going over them. Also, don't forget that stress reduces productivity- so keep calm:))

I would reccommend brief revision daily with intense revision on the weekends

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