At exam time, the negative impact of over-studying cannot be over-estimated. Karen Sullivan offers some words of caution to revising students...

In my last article, we looked at the increasing pressure on students to revise over holidays and across weekends; to put in nine-hour days to achieve top grades and opportunities (Getting exam revision right, SecEd, May 2018).

We looked at the fallacies behind this type of approach as well as the fact that the majority of students do not revise effectively. However, what we didn’t mention are the implications on health, wellbeing and even success, and these are most certainly cause for concern.

As a starting point, sleep is affected by over-studying, particularly in the lead-up to exams. Research by the Sleep Council found that 83 per cent of teenagers admit that their sleep is affected by worry and stress or exams. More than a third of those polled confessed to revising for between eight and 10 hours-a-day, with 56 per cent admitting to cramming the night before.

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