Sunday, 18 May 2008

Exam drinking

No, this is not a drinking game where you take a shot for every page you write. It's about that habit some people have to continuously sip away at a bottle whilst they sit their exams. My advice is to hydrate before the exam and top-up on fluids (and sugar) between your two essays. All that sipping wastes precious time.

It is also a cognitive no-no. The department's very own Peter Rogers and his minions have written a paper on this (Appetite, 2001, 36, 57-8). They say, "Many students take a drink into a long exam. If you are not thirsty and use the water as a distraction or comfort tool it may have a detrimental effect on your performance."(source).

They found 15% lower scores (than controls) in people taking a test where water was sipped continuously. They also found 10% higher scores where water was consumed and people were thirsty, hence why I say hydrate before the exam.

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