How to revise History so you actually take it in
Updated: Jun 8
History has so much content and it can really overwhelming when you come to revise it. In this blog post, I am going to be sharing my five-step method of revising history. These steps are perfect no matter what stage of history you are studying: from degree level, to A-Level, to GCSE.
Step 1: Summarise
Start by choosing one chapter that you want to revise. Revising by chapters is a really easy way to order and break up your revision sessions.
You need to get your textbook, all your classwork and relevant web pages that correspond with the chapter you are revising.
Use all of these resources to bullet point all the key information in a concise, clear way. I always like to do this in a word document as that way it is even clearer and I have a digital copy so I won't accidentally misplace it.
Step 2: Highlight
When I say highlight, I don't mean just cover every single word in a god-awful neon yellow highlighter; I mean use a colour coding system. I use this one:
I find this really effective as it forces me to read through all of my notes and it makes my notes easier to skim through. I also find it helps me to remember by association. I really love to use these pastel highlighters or I do it within a word document.
Step 3: Quizlet / Flashcards
I now use my condensed notes to create flashcards. I generally use Quizlet for this as I like to have them all online as that way I can use them when I am on the go. Quizlet also has many different ways to use your flashcards. I like to write them as questions as that way you can really easily just hand them to someone else and they can test you. Also, Quizlet gives you the option to print as a glossary or flashcards or test.
Step 4: Mindmaps
Another way I use my condensed notes is by creating my mindmaps. I personally use app.mindmup.com, but you can also draw them by hand. These generally sum up things in just a few words and during exam season I like to put them on a wall so I can always see them. I keep them in their own ring binder in plastic wallets as that way I can easily take them to school with me.
Step 5: Use your resources!
Now you have spent lots of time creating really effective resources, it's time to use them! I have three main ways I use my resources
Way 1: Flashcards
The way I use my flashcards is by creating piles. If I get a flashcard right, it goes into the green pile and I don't test myself on it for at least a week. If I get one wrong, it goes into the red pile and I test myself on it every day until I get it right. Even if I have got one right over 100 times as soon as I get it wrong it goes straight into the red pile.
Way 2: Mindmaps
I am sure you have done it loads; you spend ages crafting a beautiful mindmap, then you put it in a draw, never look at it again but create like a thousand more. It's not just me, right? Then I started actually using my mindmaps and it is so much more effective. I take out the mindmap I want to revise, look at it for one minute and then I recreate it on a scrap piece of paper. Anything I missed on my recreation, I add on in a different colour pen. I do this every time I come to revise the same topic again and you will find you do remember more.
Way 3: Essay Plans
The final way I use my resources is by creating essay plans and writing them. If you plan every single question you can possibly be asked and learn those plans, you are definitely set. If you want an essay plan template, the exact same one as I use, subscribe to my newsletter (you can find the form at the bottom of the page.)
I hope you enjoyed this post and found it useful. If you did, please share it with your friends. If you found this post useful check out this one: Apps that every student needs! Now go and revise some history, you know you need to!
Louise - ahellaloadofhistory