Study Support

Tips for tackling exams

Feeling anxiety about examinations is completely normal. The trick is managing and minimising it. Remember, your examination result does not define you – the examination is simply a way for you to show off what you do know.

Exams are just a job to be done as well as you can, not the be-all and end-all of your existence. So the following are just tips about how to put yourself in a position to do the best you can.

Writing Support from our Writing Fellow

We offer fantastic writing support for our undergraduate and graduate students. We have a Writing Fellow who acts as an adviser and helps students to develop better lucidity, fluency and style with essays and written tasks they have been set. The Writing Fellow in post in 2021/22 is Julie Summers, best-selling author of historical non-fiction, and Fellow of the Royal Literary Fund. Listen to Julie talk about the support she can offer you.

For the first twenty years of life after university I worked in the art world but was drawn inexorably towards writing. In truth, I have always wanted to be a writer. Finally, in 2004, I gave up my job and began writing full time. It was the best decision I have made in my career. I am about to publish my thirteenth book, a biography of the wartime editor of Vogue magazine and have accepted the role of Royal Literary Fund Fellow at St Hilda's College with great pleasure.

I am passionate about writing and unembarrassed to be so. The thrill of structuring a story or an argument so that it is compelling as well as informative is something I relish. All writing can be improved by editing, however experienced the author. From the first draft to the published work I will have as many as sixteen drafts. I see it as my role at St Hilda's to help develop a joy and passion for good writing and to encourage best practice.

Whether you want to talk about a weekly essay or chew over a chapter outline for a DPhil, I am happy to give you my full attention.'

Julie is available for consultation in Room 72 South Building on the following days in term: Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday morning. Students need to email the Writing Fellow in advance to book a session. All sessions are 50-55 minutes, individual and confidential. The session times are 11.00am, 12.00noon, 2.00pm, 3.00pm, 4.00pm. On Tuesdays 5.00-6.00pm there is a drop-in session (no appointment needed) to chat informally about writing in a group. Julie is also very happy to receive email requests for advice and will answer these as quickly as she can (but not on Thursdays or Fridays).

RLF online resources