Like several others I have exams in less than two weeks. Some are easy and others are simply too awful to attempt a description of the horror I feel when I think of them. I therefore, at 05:00 a.m ought to be either asleep in preparation for a brand new day closer to exams, or be studying. Definitely not blogging. Like a friend just put it– "The only think you should be worrying about is padhai".
Anyhow, the reason I'm online is because after wading through scores of pages both online and offline I'm simply overwhelmed with the vast amount literature that I am supposed to know of. Yet another friend told me that the best way to "tame the monster called exams", is to survey previous question papers and then swot at common topics. While the idea is rather brilliant (and apparently time-tested), I find it rather upsetting. My notion of studying involves understanding concepts. That, however shall not help me pass my exams.
So I was surfing to find software that will help me study and I found this. Now mind maps and concept maps have been around for a long time. The basic idea is to put down a central theme and then link all related material to it– forming a sort of graphical presentation of information that is easily comprehensible to graphical/visual/spatial learners like me.
Any huge bit of information is better assimilated in small chunks and the most vital bit is how one bit of information is connected with the other. FreeMind is freeware, a fast and easy download. The learning curve isn't too hard and you'll find it indispensable pretty soon just like I do now. Save the maps as graphics and take print outs then learn. Or simply learn from the comfort of your PC. Its the best compromise between learning the way it should be and between learning in terms of test taking performance. Check out the graphic on the top, I created that within two minutes of my first you– now close your eyes and imagine the possibilities.
In fact FreeMind is good for a whole host of things, including bookmarking resources (on your computer and the net or the intranet for that matter), writing essays, putting together scraps of information and even stimulating your brain into finding connections between concepts you haven't thought of.
Happy studying then.