Revision is always a taxing process. Students need to make the most of their available time to refresh and reassess their subjects ahead of exams. Educators have offered many tips for revision, and one of the most popular is to make up a set of revision cards. Revision cards can be a useful tool for students; they are cheap and easy to make, and because they can be carried in your purse or pocket they can be used anywhere. Revision cards can also turn a boring bus journey or a long wait in line at the bank into an opportunity for study.
Make a list of your key topics by referring to your syllabus. Make a short list of facts or ideas associated with each one. Cards can contain a simple note on each particular idea, or the information can be phrased in a question and answer format. Type out each topic and list of key points.
Select images to help illustrate each topic. These can be simple and representative, or you can create a mnemonic image out of some memorable combination of pictures. For example, if you want to remember that the Spanish word for bread is “pan,” you could make a picture of bread in a frying pan.
Decide how big you need your cards to be. Business-card size is usually adequate. In an image editor such as MS Paint, or a presentation package such as PowerPoint, arrange your words and images into their respective cards, making sure that the font you have chosen is big enough.
Print out your cards, ensuring that you lay the pages out properly. This is especially important if you are making double-sided cards, as poorly laid out pages will not line up when you print the reverse side of the paper. Laminate the pages and cut them up.
Your cards are now ready to use. You can carry them with you to glance at whenever you have a spare moment, or to use alongside other study tools. One good technique is to team up with a friend and use revision cards to quiz each other.
Think about the subject you are learning and how much information you can usefully include on each card. A densely-written card that has too much information to read easily may be unhelpful, but a set of cards with only very sparse information can also be counterproductive. Information on vocabulary may only require one or two words, but a history exam will require more detailed information.