Beginning an IJMB program could take a big toll on you especially when you have received hooge blows from JAMB and/or your intended Institution of choice. But it becomes the last resort of anyone who is conscious of not wasting any more time, and trust me it’s always the best resort.
One thing will always prove true in every endeavor and that is knowing how to play your coins well. You might have heard that getting 16 points in IJMB is quite a hassle but I’m never in doubt that when you register with an appropriate Centre, obtain the right orientation, with proper planning and due diligence to study, it will be just a piece of cake.
Here are a few tips that will help you feel at home as you begin your IJMB program:
BEFORE THE PROGRAM:
The credibility of the Centre
In as much as finding a suitable Center to run your IJMB program is important, it is equally essential that you look into making findings of the credibility of the center, their history, track records, patterns of teaching, and testimonials of excellence as proven by students who have gone through them.
If you have to travel because you couldn’t find a credible center in your city or you just want to be close to your intended Institution of choice, in any case just make sure to travel light. This will rid you of troubles over the carriage and extra charges, except if you will be coming in your parent’s private car.
Kiss Home Goodbye
Now that might sound harsh, but the truth is most IJMB centers do not give their students a break, the program runs for about 9 months concurrently with little or no break between. So my dear, if you really gonna miss them, I suggest you give them a very big hug and warm kisses, you are going to be gone for a pretty long while.
This is one area that cannot be overruled when it comes to making proper plans for your stay at an IJMB center. Many centers provide facilities to accommodate their students which is all-inclusive of the tuition fee. It is very important that the availability of a place of shelter is maintained so as to prepare adequately.
The best way to get first-hand information on the nitty-gritty of how things will run throughout the course of the program is by resuming early. Asides from that, by resuming early you also get enough room to plan, and that cannot be over-emphasized. I know this could sound a bit inconsiderate as some students don’t get to know their fate until when the program is already halfway, in any case whenever you resume endeavor to be on your toes, lay aside frivolities, and try to catch up on all you have lost over time.
DURING THE PROGRAM:
I know it might not feel that way, but the duration you will have spent in your IJMB program ultimately serves as your first year in the University, so it’s best if you get accustomed to the environment early enough, get along with people, make friends that help you study, align with and keep up with your goals and targets, and maintain good financial health amongst others. I usually say the IJMB period is a testing ground to groom you for University life, however you see it, you still will have to go through these things anyways, the earlier the better, LOL.
This cannot be overstressed, please attend lectures. Many of the lecturers that would be teaching you have been doing this for years and have gone for examinations and script markings and so you can bank on the fact that they will be teaching you from the experiences they have garnered over the years. Again, this will ultimately depend on the IJMB Centre, which is why I strongly advise you to register with Centres that have great track records of excellence and a wealth of experienced tutors.
Some IJMB Centres do offer their students textbooks and other associated learning aids. They are all for your benefit, utilize them. The textbooks serve as reference points to fall back on after lectures and offer a good opportunity to read ahead and even cover as many topics as possible. You have been scholarly all this while, adding some little efforts won’t hurt, wink.
You must have guessed, this will be the first on the list, I don’t know why this is coming this late, but this is not to underrate studying. Please read, again read. Give yourself to your books. The hallmark of the studentship is studying, reading your books, asking questions, teaching others, and growing. Review your class notes every day before you hit the bed, and try as much as possible to section your reading according to the syllabus and courses you are taking. That’s where the next tip comes in.
Have a Reading Schedule
I know you might say “Oh, there you go again!”, it doesn’t matter if you have tried this before or not. Come up with a reading schedule and try to stick to it, it helps you focus and align your direction and conserve energy. Your classes will hold as scheduled on the timetable so why shouldn’t you have a reading timetable?
Try to solve as many past questions as you can lay your hands on. Some IJMB Centres have a bank of questions they provide their students with to groom them in preparation for the bigger exam. Past questions only give you an idea of what to expect, you have to read in order to grab the questions by the horn.
Tutorials & Mocks
This is something that will help check your progress in study. So, if you like to know how well you are faring do yourself some good to attend the tutorials and mocks that will be organized during the course of the program. It points you to areas you are lagging behind and also challenges you to do better.
This is a perfect chance to build great friendships with invaluable girls and guys that will hold you by the hand and walk through you the storms, call your attention to mistakes and reinforce your direction. I must mention that, you should optimize your time spent with friends and groups, it could be a period for academic discussions and brainstorming. And yes, treat people well, the reason being that, these will become your family for the next 9 months and how you treat and relate with them will invariably tell on the turnout of things for you.
They say time is wealth, and that’s true because we spend our time doing something every day of our lives. As an IJMB student, it is very essential that you take care to manage your time consciously and judiciously. You might think it’s pretty a long while, but before you say, Jack Robinson, you will be faced with exams. This is even more important if you don’t resume as early as you should have and probably have missed out on a couple of things, you should be wise to dedicate time to cover up things fast and acclimatize to the modus operandi.
It is very essential that you be prudent with your spending. This is a very good skill to develop early in life and it’s pleasing that you get to nurture it at this time. As a student, your parents will send you allowances and it is in your best interest to be accountable and manage it appropriately. During your stay, you could encounter emergencies, which may require money, this is another reason why you should maintain good relationships with people.
There is actually no particular definition of fun, just do what makes you happy. Discover yourself, it’s also a good time to reignite some of your dead passions. Be it singing, dancing, cooking, football, movies, etc, however, you want to relieve some stress, just do it but in moderation. You only live once after all, and you can never turn back time. Like my old friend will say, “Never postpone enjoyment, follow the flow and enjoy the process”.
AFTER THE PROGRAM:
While you wait
While you wait for your results, it won’t be bad to read up on your intended Institution of Choice. Keep a tab on the wave of news going around and if you need to start preparing for your Post UTME, please do. Check up the eligibility and requirements for your intended course of study and begin to connect the dots.
I don’t need to remind you to maintain contact with the Management of the center in order to obtain firsthand information, even as you pray and wait for your results, keep your hopes high. Check up on friends, those you did the IJMB program with, get to know the progress of things with them.
You could also take some online classes, learn a soft skill, register with a tech institute, and develop yourself. The truth is the University is a much bigger platform and like I said everything you will have gone through will help build your muscles for the weight you are about to embark on.
These are just a few of the things that should be in place when you take up an IJMB program, of course, they are not limited to this. Once you have done your part of the deal, you undoubtedly will have success beckoning on you.
IMPORTANT THINGS TO KNOW WHEN PREPARING FOR YOUR A’ LEVEL EXAMINATION
As a student, it could be a hassle for you to ponder over how to ace your A’ level Examination, but with adequate preparation and paying attention to important areas, success will be knocking at your door as you go through it.
Here are a few of the things that you should put in place during the course of your program and as you prepare for your examination:
BEFORE THE EXAMINATION:
As a student, it is obligatory for you to attend classes and lectures. I mean, you paid the tuition fee and are the one interested in getting knowledge so you should never neglect your lectures. More importantly, during lectures, you get to know the mind of the lecturer and areas of emphasis to which he might be pointing to. Needless to say that you can never compare getting the notes of the class from friends to being in the class yourself.
Read o! This is an obligation, a duty expected of you. It’s like you being employed in a school and your job description is to study your books and all other related things, your salary becomes the success you will achieve at the end of the day. So Dears, you should study not because you don’t want to waste your parents’ investment but because you are hungry for excellence.
This is another area which you should be smart to harness. A lot of tutorials from your class scholars, lecturers, and others will be flying about during the course of the program, it is only wise of you to attend. It not only enables you to learn what you haven’t read but also helps you remember what you have learned and so it’s a win-win for you. No wonder the smart ones always pass their exams, in most cases though.
If you have a couple of friends, you could sit and brainstorm on topics you all have read and throw questions at one another. It enables you to finish up your syllabus quickly as you can bank on the knowledge gained from the academic discussion, even if you haven’t read the topic. It also helps what you have read stick with you for longer. You know what they say, the more you teach, the better you know.
Frequently Asked Questions
Now, this cannot be ruled out. Checkup past questions on all your courses. It keeps you abreast of the kind of questions to expect and what to look forward to, it also sheds light on the areas to focus more on as you read. Try as much as possible to go over the frequently asked questions throughout the years and obtain an in-depth understanding of the concepts involved as you study.
Get good sleep
The need for sleep cannot be overemphasized. As a student, you should get about 7 to 8 hours of sleep. Adequate sleep improves memory and helps with cognition. You get positioned to better prepare for your exams when you get enough sleep, it also enables you to read as you get refreshed and open to receiving knowledge. Endeavor to maintain good sleep hygiene especially the night before your exam, students tend to pull an all-nighter, it’s not good for you. Ensure you catch some sleep before you go to the exam hall.
Your body needs more energy during exams, you are expending great energy to read and prepare for your exams, and so ensure to make up for this by eating healthy rich food during exams, especially in the morning before your exam. Have you heard of brain block? One of the things that contribute to that is the lack of glucose getting to the brain. So to prevent dysfunction of your brain during exams, do well to eat something before you enter the hall even if it’s a bottle of Soda and some biscuits.
DURING THE EXAMINATION:
Do not allow fear
I know it’s normal to feel unusual and awkward when exams are right before your face. But trust me, fear and apprehension only make things worse. It puts you under pressure and can even make you forget what you have read. So whenever that fear comes to you, just pat yourself at the back and say “I got this!” Remember that, that isn’t the first examination you will be writing and so how worse can it get? You will do even better, go and shine.
Say a prayer
I don’t know if it’s a myth or not, they say, one tends to do better when they pray before starting an exam. Whichever it is, one thing cannot be denied – A brief prayer before an exam puts you in an atmosphere of confidence and determination to face the exam. If this goes down well with you, I enjoin you to do it. Whether faith or myth, you are empowered with a quiet hope that you have done well.
After you have been given your question papers, it is expedient of you to read the instructions that accrue very well. Some examiners require you to answer the questions in a particular manner, some make the first question compulsory. So as not to miss out, you should carefully observe the instructions at the top of the paper and read the questions very well in order to understand what is being asked of you.
Write more than you are asked
This will be helpful in your theory examinations. If you know more than the question asks you on a particular topic, put it down. Don’t get me wrong, write what you have been asked and if you have extra stuff, don’t hesitate to give it to them if time is still on your side. It is an avenue to get an extra mark and will also help buffer up in areas you didn’t do quite well.
Be careful with your spellings and ensure your words are in context. I remember writing an essay one time and I forgot the spelling of ‘off’, I wanted to write something like ‘got off the bike’ and I ended up writing ‘get out of the bike’, crazy isn’t it? It was totally out of context, LOL! These things happen, again maintaining your calm is necessary during an exam, I guess I must have been overwhelmed.
Ensure you don’t cancel your work needlessly. Be careful to write just what is appropriate, so you don’t have to cross what you have written over and over again. Make sure your points are well presented in bullets and tabulate where necessary. A good presentation of the written work draws the attention of and induces the interest of the examiner, it also proves that as a student you are confident of what you have written.
Is your handwriting readable? How well do you write? Do you just muddle everything up? Ensure what you write is very legible and readable by the examiner. Outline your writings very well and make them very structured. This makes your work attractive to the examiner and incites his interest in reading thoroughly what you have written.
If you are a science student, this is a booster for you. Practicals take up a greater percentage of the examination, it will be smart of you to give your best to your practicals as much as you can. This will also fall back on if you have been attending practicals before the examination started.
I will emphasize this over and over again. Try to keep up with time as you write. Ensure you attempt every question you are meant to answer. Break your work into bits. If you are running against time with a particular question, leave it and move to the next. I can assure you that if you have gone over all the questions, and you still got time at your disposal you will be able to write more. The trick is to write something on all aspects so as not to lose out on the marks.
Go over what you have written
Review all that you have put down by going over them again. Cross your Ts and dot your Is, leave no stone unturned, ensure you have answered all the questions. Check the question paper again, to be sure you answered exactly what the question demands.
Do not engage in any examination malpractice whatsoever. Make sure you do not bring anything that will implicate you and do not whisper to others during the course of the examination. Try as much as possible to keep calm and you will remember all you have learned and read if you did justice to your books.
AFTER THE EXAMINATION:
Get some rest
Try to catch some sleep after your exam, it helps you recharge and makes you better able to approach another cycle of reading and writing. A 2 to 3 hours nap will help you regain momentum to face the next mountain.
Eat something light
Feed your brain and body with a nourishing meal, it helps you build up the strength you have lost in the course of writing and for the duration of the examination. Take a lot of fluids too, and eat fruits, this will help you not to break down and keep away infections.
Take a cold shower
Get a cold bath. This activates your senses and makes you alert and of course, improves your cognition. You will be better positioned to dive into reading for the next examination after this routine.
Prepare for the next exam
After you have recuperated, it is essential you start reading for your next examination. Give it your best, read as it all depends on reading. Trust me your congratulations will be within your reach because rest is sweet after labor.
Success is a gradual process, it doesn’t happen suddenly. It is the result of built efforts over time. There are a few things to note as a student concerned about their academic prosperity and examination success and these are just some of them, I believe when you take care to observe all these you will undoubtedly reach your targets in the long run.