Learning from Mock Exams


The snow before Christmas had a knock on effect for many exam students this year. Students sat mock exams later than normal without getting a chance to finish any more of the course work. Everyone has anxiously awaited results and feedback. At The Homework Club we believe evaluation is vital to success. The Mock results don’t have to set what you will get in June. Included are some of the top tips  we go through for our own students. The mocks are a test run! They test our endurance.

If you had a good mocks – you should be always be careful. Were you just lucky with the paper? are you likely to get the same questions in June? If yes, your on the road to success.

If you had a bad mocks – Don’t despair. Above all else stay confident. Always aim for the stars and you will reach success. Find your mistakes and learn from the experience. It’s not the end of the world.

There are 8 main factors that effect exam performance

Subject Knowledge

Your Exam History

Exam Preparation

Exam Practice

Experience of the Subject

Writing Skills

Use of Time

Attitude and Approach

Here are key questions you need to ask yourself. Do these for each one of your subjects in turn, they are all different!

  • Are you better at some questions than others? Did you do your best questions first? vital time management, you will spend you best time on the topics you are most likely to score highly on
  • Did you choose the right questions?
  • Did you understand the questions? Didn’t do your best topics because you didn’t understand the question? what do the words compare, contrast, Describe, Evaluate mean?
  • Did you run out of time? Did you attempt more questions on the paper than you needed to? This is bad practice. Decide your questions and do then in order of best to worst.
  • How was your writing speed? this skill is just practice. Did you read through your work for silly mistakes? good time management allows you time to check.
  • Did you write an essay plan? Did you include a brainstorm or mind-map? Always show all your work, the examiner is not a mind reader! By doing a plan you will add structure.
  • Can you tell how good your answers are? Do you know what the examiner is looking for you to say? swap questions with your friends for comparison
  • How good was your presentation? help the examiner by underlining words? did you use txt speech? (a big no no!) keep your sections together? always leave space at the end of a question to go back. Start a new question on a new page. Difficult question? move on but leave yourself room to go back.

We have to manage our demons too! Triggers for negative attitude are:

Getting bored with revising – do something fun – get a large sheet of paper and as many colour markers – can you make a picture to fit the whole topic?

Worrying about letting other people down – This has to be about YOU – set yourself achievable tasks and tick them off!

Putting too much pressure on success – focus on the small tasks and you will get there in the end. We always achieve what we put the work in for.

Thinking about how clever everyone else is – well since we all do it, who’s cleverest? the ones that don’t bother!

Dwelling on times when I didn’t do well – they were a test run and during the exams in June it is improtant to put each paper behind you and move on to the next.

Getting overwhelmed by how much there is to learn – do it in lego blocks, divide everything up into smaller tasks and conquer these!

Listening to gossip/rumours – everyone reacts differently to stress,  try and ignore the people who talk it up!

Losing fate in yourself – just keep talking to people you trust and know you well, they will encourage you to the last hurdle

Feeling guilty about not studying 24/7 – you have to take time out and there is no point in doing so if all your going to do with it is worry about what your not doing!

I hope you can now see that having the subject knowledge is only a small part of what will help you to achieve your true potential in June. I’ll add some more notes over the next few weeks about stress management! Another vital role in the process.