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Answers from a Lazy Topper: How to memorize for exams

Updated on May 13, 2016
Priya Barua profile image

Priya Barua has found out remarkable ways of studying efficiently and has shared them with the online community.

I am neither a psychologist nor a specialist to suggest different ways of memorizing techniques. But I am a school student who has done extremely well in exams.

What I have understood so far is that memorizing information for an exam is an art. You can very well study blindly and work late into the night and still not reap any results. I have seen many of my friends doing that, and it does not help. It just creates anxiety and tension.

So here I have listed a few ways of how to memorize for your exams:

1. Try to understand what you’re studying:

As a student of a higher class, it is not possible for you to memorize everything. Many students make that mistake and in the end they simply forget what they’ve learnt. So instead try to understand your material. Read it twice if you’re slow to understand things. And analyse it once before you start memorizing. Let me assure you that you will forget. So if you have understood it well, at least you will be able to write your own answer during the exam.

Creating associations is as important as trying to understand your material
Creating associations is as important as trying to understand your material

2. Create Associations:

Often most semesters are repetitions of the previous one. What you have learnt in class 6 may come again in class 12, only in a more elaborate and descriptive form. I know that you can’t possibly remember what was written in your class 6 books. So just skim through the old books before you get on with your lessons.

If in case you don’t have those books, just go to the internet to get a vague idea of the topic that will eventually study. This will help you have a general concept and once you get on with your chapter, you will immediately form associations. I don’t know much about the science behind this technique, but it has always worked for me.

3. Mnemonics:

There was this psychology practical which required us to remember nearly 12 sub-titles in a sequence. If you missed one sub-titles, then Poof! You lose marks. So what I did is make up a Mnemonics for those sub-titles. It was pretty meaningless, nothing like VIBGYOR which will forever be in the back of your head. But it worked when it was needed to. So go forward and play and explore words to come up with your own mnemonics. It’s very useful when you have to remember plenty of sub-points.

Have you ever employed mnemonics while studying?

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Reading it out loud helps
Reading it out loud helps

4. Read Aloud:

Mouth pains a lot, I know. Reading out loud is really not the most practical method of studying. It never was. But reading out loud helps you to remember better. So only use this option if you are in a dire state.

5. Write it down:

Writing it down is perhaps the best way of memorizing things. But this technique is in relation to (#1). If you understand what you’re studying, and then subsequently write it down a couple of times, then you can be assured it will remain in your head for a relatively longer time.


Memorizing something a month from your exams will not help. During that time, try to understand your notes and lessons and clear all doubts. Only when the exam dates closes in, start memorizing the things that needs to be memorized.

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