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10 Tips for passing essay exam

Essay exams are usually conducted with the aim of identifying students who are talented and who posses’ critical thinking skills and who are better at organizing their ideas and thoughts. Writing and passing essay exams require certain skills and preparations. It requires the student to practice several essays and taking the needed preparatory steps. Such a student would need to develop essay writing skills. Also sometimes keeping tabs on the current events and issues may be of help. Time management skill is also important as you’ll need a combination of speed and accuracy to succeed in such exams. In addition to knowing how to write an essay, what are the tips for passing an essay?

Below are some useful tips for passing essay exams:

1. Know the material

The first and most important step in getting ready for an essay exam is knowing the material. This should be done early enough to significantly increase your chances of passing. This involves reading up all the materials given, active participation in class activities, taking down notes and reading such notes frequently. The eve of the essay exam should be spent reviewing your lecture notes, hand outs and course materials. In knowing how to write an essay, you must first of all know what is required of you.

2. Relax

Take a few minutes to compose yourself and gather your thoughts before you start answering the essay questions. This is particularly helpful when you’re hard pressed for time.

3. Read the instructions

Sometimes students are such in a hurry that they fail to read the instructions! The outcome of such exams is quite undesirable. One useful tip that will not only help you know how to write an essay but also pass it with good grades is to read the instructions. Take your time to read and adhere to the instructions given. Know how many questions you’re required to answer and the required length of answers.

4. Study the topic

Go through the topic over and over again. Look out for relevant key words that may give you a clue on how to approach your essay.

When the question says:

State: give your answers in a very clear, logical order.

List/enumerate/trace: keep it simple and straight to the point.

Summarize/review: present the main points in a concise way

Discuss/criticize/evaluate/justify: present your points using specific facts and instances

5. Set up a time schedule

Divide the total time for the essay into various parts: time to jot down points and plan your approach, time to do the actual writing, time for reviewing and editing your essay. Just come up with a feasible time schedule and stick to it.

6. Jot down ideas

Answering an essay question without first of all jotting down your points and figuring out a plan of approach is tantamount to putting the cart before the horse. So spend a few minutes jotting down ideas and planning your approach.

7. Start with a strong first sentence

Start your essay with a very captivating introduction. Make sure your main points are clearly stated in your first sentence.

8. Stay on track

While writing, try to re-read the questions from time to time to ensure that you’re still on track. Provide relevant and detailed information. Avoid unnecessary repetition of words.

9. Don’t panic

When pressed for time, keep your conclusion simple and ensure it emphasizes your main points. Trying to rush things in panic may compromise the quality of what you’ve written up to that point.

10. Edit and proofread

After writing your essay, take some time to carefully read through your work. As you read through, you may find places where you need to correct or edit. Carefully effect the corrections. Make sure your corrections are easy and clear to read if you’re writing by hand.

Adhering to the above tips makes you know not only how to write an essay but how to pass an essay exam with good grades.