Studying for your GCSE computing exam can feel daunting because of the large about of coursework you need to retain and recall. This can be cause for stress and anxiety, but fortunately, you have a very sophisticated information processor sitting between your ears and when you use smart study tools, like mind maps, you can greatly enhance your ability to learn and perform well in your GCSEs.
Our brains are even more complex and sophisticated than computers, and if you think that computers have a lot of storage space, scientists estimate that the data storage capacity of an average human brain is 1 000 gigabytes!* With over a trillion neural networks ready to process information, work with them to get the most from your study time. “How?” you ask. The brain loves to organize information into groups, loves stimulation with colour, patterns, symbols and images, and loves to find links and relationships between things. This means that finding associations are a powerful technique and mind maps are a great way to do that. Here’s how:
A mind map starts with a central topic or idea with groups of related keywords radiating outwards, going into further and further detail. This means you’ve helped your brain organise the information, condense it into memorable keywords, create strong associations that will prompt recall easily. Because humans are very visual creatures, making an overall picture rather than paragraphs of text means your brain will find it much easier to extract the information you need in your exam because you’re using multiple neural networks and leveraging the power of different regions of your brain. What’s more, you’re much more likely to recall this information long after your exam – proof of deep learning.
“But I’m not creative, I can’t draw, and I don’t have time to spend on making mind maps,” we hear you say. That’s ok because you can use mind maps that have been created for you and still benefit from them. The key is in personalising them with your own colours, patterns, symbols and associations so they’re more meaningful and memorable to you. Here at GCSE Computing, we’ve created mind maps with all the important GCSE computing content you could need.
What sounds better when revising for your GCSEs? Reading through pages and pages of notes and coursework, or having a complete, dynamic mind map with keywords that your brain can process and unzip at lightning speed?
*Paul Reber, professor of psychology at Northwestern University.