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How To Answer A Question Where You Don't Know The Answer

Education : Exams And Revision

This sounds strange: how can you answer a question where you don't know the answer?

Well, focus on the word KNOW. You may not know the answer but can still have a good guess.

Think of a quiz: often you are not sure of the answer but find the right one.

To try to get to an answer when unsure, use this technique:

- read the question
- re-read the question, highlight the key parts of the question

If a gut instinct gives you an answer, write it down.

But if still nothing:

- write down the TOPIC of the question, e.g. if it is a biology exam and you are being asked about the carbon cycle, then write down:

If you have time, bullet point everything that you DO know about the carbon cycle: e.g. factory emissions putting carbon in the air, vegetation using CO2 and sunlight in photosynthesis.

See if this helps trigger an answer or at least an educated guess - often you will find it will.

If still nothing comes to you, then take a guess. You may well not be right, but putting no answer at all guarantees you will be wrong.

Bottom line: if you have time, have a think around the issue, dig deep in your mind for connected topics, and try to visualise the question.

By: Chris

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