Summary - Online exams can be stressful for many reasons. Here, we have discussed diverse exam formats, online exam preparation checklist,.. and how to prepare for the online exams categorizing as before, two-to-three days before, during, and after the exam. We have also added a few tips that will help you in the open-book online exam. Let’s dig in!

If you’re reading this, you have or will be sitting for an online exam soon. I am here to share my top tips for preparing for online exams to help you excel as you tackle them. As someone who obtained a first-class law degree by taking online exams in her final year of law, you’ll be pleased to know that I am here to share my top tips for Taking Online Exams and how to prepare for online exams to help you succeed! But first, let us know what types of online exams you may encounter.

Preparing For Online Exams Checklist

  1. Chunk; Don’t cram
  2. Start early
  3. Stay positive
  4. Set priorities
  5. Make study sheets or cue card
  6. Go to the review class and find out about the exam
  7. Minimize distraction like phone and video games
  8. Get help from experts
Preparing For Online Exams Checklist

Understanding Diverse Online Exam Formats

As a law student and mentor, I’ve encountered many online exam formats, each with unique challenges and strategies. The most common types include multiple-choice questions (MCQs), essay-based exams, and open-book assessments. Each format tests not just your knowledge but also different skills.

Before The Exam

Creating An Effective Study Plan

First things first! Let’s check how creating an effective study plan can help you!

Crafting A Personalized Schedule

My approach to preparing for online exams begins with creating a structured yet flexible study plan. I break down the syllabus into manageable segments, allocating specific time slots for each topic. This not only ensures comprehensive coverage but also helps in tracking progress. However, how long to prepare for an exam differs from person to person. 

Regular Revision And Practice

Emphasizing the significance of consistent review is vital. It is the primary means of transferring information from short-term to long-term memory. Incorporating weekly revision sessions into my study plan has been a game changer. Additionally, I regularly attempt practice tests to gauge my understanding and adapt my study plan accordingly.

Leveraging Study Aids And Online Exams Resources

In today’s digital age, many resources including online exam help are available at our fingertips. From educational websites to online courses, these tools offer diverse perspectives and explanations that enrich my learning. I make it a point to utilize these resources to supplement my study material, especially for complex topics. Search for best online exam help for dire situations.

Setting Up A Conducive Study Environment

Next in line we have a study environment! Have you been ignoring your study  environment? Then know why it is so significant. 

Crafting The Perfect Study Nook

My ideal study environment is a blend of comfort and functionality. I thrive in a quiet, well-lit space with minimal distractions. I ensure my study area is organized, with all necessary materials within reach, to maintain focus and efficiency during online classes.

Minimizing Distractions

Maintaining focus can be challenging in the era of constant notifications. I use the Pomodoro Technique to maximize concentration and minimize distractions, such as turning off non-essential notifications and having specific ‘study hours.’

Comfort Is Key

A comfortable chair, adequate lighting, and a clutter-free desk are more than just aesthetic choices; they significantly impact study efficiency. Ergonomics plays a crucial role in avoiding physical strain during long study sessions.

Two To Three Days Before The Exam

Technical Preparations

Now it’s time for the technicalities. Technical malfunction may result in failure! So, be careful!

Ensuring Technical Reliability

My technical checklist includes a stable internet connection, a functioning computer, and all necessary software and applications installed and updated. I also recommend having a backup plan, like a secondary device, in case of unforeseen issues.

Familiarity With Exam Software/Platform

Understanding the functionalities and exploring the exam platform beforehand is crucial. If available, I usually practice with demo tests to avoid any last-minute surprises. This approach helps me stay prepared and confident, ensuring I can take my online exam effectively.

Handling Technical Issues

I keep contact information for technical support handy and familiarize myself with reporting issues during the exam. Quick troubleshooting steps, like restarting the device or checking the connection, can sometimes resolve common problems.

Mental And Physical Well-Being

Do not ignore your mental and physical well-being! It is the most significant aspect that we as students usually overlook.

Managing Stress And Anxiety

My strategy for managing pre-exam jitters involves regular exercise, meditation, and a positive mindset. I also set realistic goals and remind myself that taking breaks is okay.

The Role Of Sleep, Nutrition, And Exercise

Sufficient sleep, regular physical activity, and a balanced diet are pillars of my exam preparation. They significantly impact cognitive function and overall well-being.

Relaxation And Mindfulness Practices

Techniques like deep breathing, mindfulness meditation, and yoga help me stay calm and focused. These practices are not just for exam time; they’re part of my daily routine.

During The Exam

My Exam Day Routine

I start the day with a healthy breakfast, light exercise, and a quick note review. I then log in early to avoid any last-minute technical glitches.

Time Management And Strategy

I carefully read each question during the exam and allocated time based on its complexity. I tackled more straightforward questions to build confidence before moving to the challenging ones.

Staying Calm And Focused

Maintaining composure is essential. I practice deep breathing and reassure myself of my thorough preparation. Focusing on the current task rather than fixating on the result effectively manages anxiety.

After The Exam

  • Do not get involved in discussions regarding the exam. It is best to forget about the exam. Busy yourself with other responsibilities or just focus on something else.
  • Do not spend too much time worrying about what you may have missed. Do not go back and ponder if you did good or not. 
  • Take a break and engage in other activities apart from studying.

5 Tips To Help You Prepare For Open Book Exams

When I take an online exam, mainly open-book exams, I follow these essential strategies:

  1. Creating your timetable to avoid burnout and ensure you get plenty of rest between each paper is necessary. 
  2. Open-book exams are mentally exhausting. It is given that you will feel sluggish. Hence, it is important to rest as much as you can before and during your exam.
  3. The major mistake students make is assuming one doesn’t need to prepare for an open-book exam. As the materials will be by their side! But you need to prepare your notes to answer the questions. So prepare well!
  4. Remember, it is not an assignment, so do not treat it like an assignment. Treat it like a proper exam because you will be graded!
  5. Electronics can malfunction at any time. Thus, ensure your laptop/computer is ready and ‘autosave’ is on! Also, keep your work saved in two USB sticks, or you may lose a day’s work overnight.


In summary, my strategy for online exam preparation covers study techniques and mental health maintenance. Remember, learning paths vary; find and trust the methods that suit you best to increase your chances of success.

Courtney Haden