How to revise

Start your revision NOW! This will make your life a whole lot easier as you approach the exams – you won’t have so much to do, you’ll retain information better, and you’ll be in good habits. 

Some handy tips: 

  • Don’t be passive – just skimming through revision guides and your notebooks will only do so much. We retain more information by DOING something with it: write or record your notes in your own words.
  • Practise your skills as well as just the information: you need to be able to write clearly about your ideas. Create essay plans, write What How Why paragraphs.
  • Find what works for YOU. Not every method will work for everyone. Half an hour on a method that will help you is far better than hours and hours on something that won’t​
  • Know your Assessment Objectives – these will get you the marks. Make sure you can demonstrate them!
  • Ask for help! From family, classmates and your teachers! If you do a practice essay, hand it to an English teacher and the team will mark it for you.

Some ways to revise:

  • Reread the texts
    • You can find a link for each one under the Literature tab.
  • Watch Mr Bruff videos
  • Use a revision clock
    • Split your page into twelve and pick 12 topics (e.g. ‘presentation of the working class’, ‘Gerald’). Set a timer for 5 minutes and write as much as you can on that topic until the alarm goes. Then repeat until your clock is full!


  • Create plans for essay questions
  • Make mind-maps about specific characters/themes
  • Create detailed timelines
  • Use the Knowledge Organisers​ we gave you at the end of Year 10.
    • (Current Year 10, you will get these as you go through your texts.)
  • Use your CGP guides
    • Remember, you can get these through the school for a lower price than in the shops! Ask at Reception for more information.
  • Specific analysis of key quotes
  • Try practice questions
  • Create and use flashcards
  • Record your notes and play them back to yourself
  • Quiz a peer
  • Use Shmoop and SparkNotes
  • Copy your notes onto post-its and stick them around your house
  • Redraft mock exams and in-class tasks to make them better