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Writing and using a "cheat sheet"
Transcript of Writing and using a "cheat sheet"
THE PROCESS OF WRITING A
A "CHEAT SHEET" is a page of handwritten notes that your course rules explicitly say you are allowed to take into your exam.
MAKING A GOOD
FOLLOW THE RULES
Must be EASY for YOU
to find things on it
to know what it means
make it readable
use space wisely
organise things on the page
They might take it away if you don't!
handwritten or typed?
one or two sided
ONE piece of paper
three words are better than ten!
a picture speaks a thousand words
Things you need help remembering
... keeping in mind
the GOOD ADVICE
NOT worked examples
WHAT TO PUT ON IT
WHY THIS PROCESS
Maths Learning Centre
The University of Adelaide
Means to an end:
REMEMBERING facts, formulas and procedures
The CHEAT SHEET deals with THIS
So the EXAM can focus on THIS
It saves you a lot of stress
Don't have to waste energy on MEMORY
Can focus on UNDERSTANDING instead
Helps you to study
Practise exams with your cheat sheet
Good to practise exams anyway!
Helps to improve your cheat sheet
Helps to learn where things are
Use it to help you focus
Decide which part of your CHEAT SHEET goes with each EXAM QUESTION
HEADINGS on the cheat sheet help with this
Decide which FACTS, FORMULAS and PROCESSES go with each QUESTION PART
Use it to help you finish
Helps not to miss anything
LISTS and PROCESSES help with this
Helps when you're stuck
Might give inspiration
What the exam is really about!
WRITING AND EDITING
Sort the CONCEPTS you need to UNDERSTAND
Sort the FACTS, FORMULAS and PROCESSES
you need to REMEMBER
Find out what you need HELP to REMEMBER
WRITE the cheat sheet
PRACTICE using it in exam situation
EDIT the cheat sheet
Ask yourself questions
Get from the assignments
Which is most used?
Try to remember
What was useful?
Was there anything missing?
Can I make it easier to use?
Anything missing or incorrect?
Know won't use it
The winner is:
Helps you understand concepts
Helps you put the most useful things on
Helps you make it easy to use
No extra things stuck on
Most lined paper is NOT A4
So you remember them exactly
eg "SOH CAH TOA"
neat writing is good
too small writing is bad
put some space between things
The moral is:
And no cheat sheet can do that for you!
Why is this here?
How are things connected?
What would happen if... ?
Write down everything you're expected to remember, every time you're expected to remember it
try lining things up
tables and lists
Which is what the exam is about!
The loser is:
Don't know won't use it
Take from that what you will
Handwrite anyway -- it helps to remember.
But if you MUST then PLEASE mark the steps of the process
you really need to understand!
T. N. Dorsel and G. W. Cundiff, "The Cheat-Sheet: Efficient Coding Device or Indispensable Crutch?", The Journal of Experimental Education, Vol 48, No 1 (1979) 39-42
No cheat sheet
Know will use it
Don't know won't use it
Know won't use it
FOUR GROUPS OF STUDENTS
Stats lecturer asked us to help the students use cheat sheets.
Talking to staff...
Talking to students...
Began to prepare a seminar for students:
Had many questions about cheat sheets now.
... they all have an opinion.
... helps them study.
... don't actually use it.
... mainly refer to Year 12 maths.
... often anecdotal.
... not about maths exams.
... inconclusive at best.
... contradictory at worst.
... how to actually cheat.
... how to cram the most on.
Surveyed students to find out more.
of our research
How do they use their cheat sheets?
Formulas, lists, procedures, definitions
Worked examples, past exam questions
How do they make their cheat sheets?
Way to organise thoughts
Distractor from other study
How useful do they find the cheat sheet?
"Very useful" because had all the formulas
Only "moderately useful" because they didn't use all of it all the time
How does it affect their stress?
Reduced because it stopped worry
Reduced because helped to study
Increased because afraid of doing it wrong