Many times I’ve been asked a question: what is the right way to revise English Literature?
Is it possible for a student to absorb such a large chunk of information and crack the English Literature UGC-NET Exam?
Well, many students have cracked the UGC-NET examination a couple of times in a row.
Teachers on YouTube have cracked the UGC-NET examination five times, ten times, and even fifteen times. They feel good about cracking the NET examination.
However, what they don’t tell you is that they have been teaching English Literature for the past many years.
A below-average student can crack the examination in English Literature if he starts teaching what s/he has learned.
The simple reason is when you study something, you only remember 10-20% of the information, but when you teach the subject, you absorb 90% of the information.
So here we go with our first scientific way to revise English Literature the right way.
1. Start Teaching
The above diagram shows the retention rate of an average student:
- Lecture < 10%
- Reading – 10%
- Audiovisual – 20%
- Demonstration – 30%
- Discussion – 50%
- Practices doing – 75%
- Teach others – 90%
Now, you all have to spend 50% of your time learning new concepts and spend 50% of your time teaching the same concepts to your friends or students.
This way, you are going to make your knowledge permanent in your long-term memory.
If you already have cracked the UGC-NET examination, I encourage you to start teaching English Literature to the students as soon as possible.
Once you have the UGC-NET certificate, you can teach English Literature anywhere in India, and no one who can stop you from teaching this subject. Moreover, there are more hidden rewards of cracking UGC-NET exam and teaching English Literature.
You can teach a friend or some undergraduate students without charging any money. When you do anything with the act of kindness and with the mindset of serving the people around you, you have an opportunity to expand the spiritual dimensions of your life.
So start helping your friends or make new friends and figure out how to deal with the overwhelming syllabus.
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2. Revisit Your Study Material More Often
Moving forward, the second thing you must remember is that whenever you study something, you forget almost 75% of the information in 24 hours.
In some cases, you may forget around 90% of what you have studied.
For instance, if you have studied the post-modern age today, most certainly you will forget most of the writers and their works by tomorrow morning.
Therefore, you must revise the study material now and then. If you don’t revise the study material several times, you will forget the basic facts about the authors.
It is not the quantity of your study material but the quality of your study material that will make all the difference.
So the best way to revise the study material is:
- Revise it on day 1.
- On day 2, revise it again.
- On day 3, revisit the same topics.
- Revise the study material once a week for a month.
- After one month, you can leave the topic. Just revise it before the examination.
Revising your study material five to ten times before exams will help you store the information in your long-term memory.
3. Recognition V/S Recollection
First of all, you need to understand the difference between Recognition and Recollection.
I’ve seen many students moving swiftly from one page to another while revising the study material.
They keep on turning the pages of their study material by simply saying, “I know this age of British Literature… This is very easy… I have studied it already…” It is the biggest mistake most students make.
Flipping one page after another is called recognition, not recollection.
For a particular moment, you think you know the study material, but this is not how you are developing your brain’s recollecting power.
In the examination, it is not recognition but your ability to recollect the material plays a big role.
To build this recollecting power, what you have to do is you have to create a list of all the writers on a piece of paper and then try to recollect what you know about the writers.
Try to remember the important works and other facts written by the writer.
Whenever you forget something, don’t try to look into the notes. Try to stress your brain to recollect the information. Later on, you can check your notes and find out what was missing from your memory.
4. Go An Extra Mile
Go an extra mile by studying a little more about the writers and their important works.
You can read the text analysis, research papers, newspaper columns, reviews by the readers and literary critic.
Our brain needs comprehensive knowledge to store bits of information. So the more we consume, the higher will be the chances to remember more.
I’ve recommended 9 Netflix series which will help you expand your knowledge of English Literature.
Check the previous year’s paper, and you will find the difficulty level of the English Literature question paper is somewhere from Easy to Moderate level.
Only 25% of the questions are difficult, and 75% are between easy to moderate levels.
So when you watch documentaries or movies, you are studying the subject in depth. All the movies and documentaries you watch will put the topics at your fingertips. Though watching documentaries will consume a lot of your time, it will be very helpful for you to attempt the most question easily.
Also, reading summaries and sitting in the exam makes no sense. If you watch a movie or documentary, you are indirectly digesting a fair amount of information associated with the works or the history.
5. Take Help From the Internet
There are two types of students:
- Students with a fixed mindset.
- Students with a growth mindset.
It is always the students with a growth mindset who are going to win the game.
Growth mindset students increase their capacity every time they study English Literature. They do not stick to a particular theory or concept, and they are always eager to have a 3-D view of the subject.
Internet is a boon for a growth mindset students.
You can be one among the growth mindset student if you decide to take maximum advantage of the free and paid sources available on the Internet.
What websites do you use while studying Literature? Are you a teacher or a student? How can you contribute to helping the students in revising English Literature in the right way? Let me know in the comments below.