Answering questions is one of the most effective revision technique, according to neuroscience and educators. It demands the synthesis of different concepts, uses retrieval practice, creates new and stronger connections in our brain, and helps us to understand information and remember it more effectively. Practice questions are an incredibly useful thing to help your students succeed. But where do we find practice questions? Here are some good sources.
If you teach GCSE or A Level exams, you can find practice questions from the exam boards. Most of them will provide free access to past papers on their website. They may even provide the marking scheme used. This is very useful practice as it will let students experience exam-style questions and the kinds of answers that are expected from them. They can use the questions in their regular revision routine, or – near the exam dates – as a mock exam. This type of practice will also help with exam anxiety.
There is a lot of good stuff on the internet, being shared between teachers. If you need some inspiration, try some of these blogs written by other teachers (tell us if you know anyone we should add to this list!):
GCSE and A Levels shouldn’t be a competition between pupils. They should be working together to be as prepared as possible for the exams. A good source of practice questions is each other.
For every topic that they revise, ask each student to come up with 5 questions and let them exchange the questions. You can also help them discuss the answers and improve them.
Another great source of questions is Seneca Learning. Hundreds of free exam board specific practice questions are available on the website. The best part is that Seneca’s smart algorithm keeps track of pupils' previous answers and selects new questions based on how they are doing so far!