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EXAM ESSENTIALS: revision tips, duas, advice etc. - 7th Century Generation

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EXAM ESSENTIALS: revision tips, duas, advice etc.


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#1 -tawakkul-

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 01:46 AM

[(s)] dear brothers and sisters,

wel basically, i was getting so scared with exams just round the corner and am dying of stress, coz i've got soooooooooooo much to do, and have no idea where to start, and am sure many of you guys are feeling the same way as me, so i knew that some time bak we had sum useful exam stuf on the forum, and so was jus reading sum of the stuf thats been posted here, and mashallah, some of the stuf is excellent, and so i thought all the stuf that our dear forumites posted up previously in other threads can be compiled and posted up into one big fat thread, so that we can all benefit from it, inshallah. so i hope all these exam essentials come into use and are beneficial to you in some way. best of luck everyone, and tk cre.

[(ws)]
ur sista afsana[(Csis)]

ps. jus to remind u again, i originally did not post any of that stuf, other dear forumites did, i jus put wateva i could find into one big fat thread!so happy revising...:)


#2 -tawakkul-

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 01:47 AM

RECOMMENDED DUAS FOR STUDYING


Bismillah irRahman irRaheem
In the Name of Allaah, The Most Gracious, The Most Kind

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

DUA BEFORE STUDYING

Allahumma infa'nii bimaa O Allah! Make useful for me what You
'allamtanii wa'allimnii taught me and teach me knowledge
maa yanfa' unii. that will be useful to me.

Allahumma inii as'aluka O Allah! I ask You for the understanding
fahmal-nabiyyen wa hifthal of the prophets and the memory of the
mursaleen al-muqarrabeen. messengers, and those nearest to You.
Allahumma ijal leesanee O Allah! Make my tongue full of
'amiran bi thikrika wa Your remembrance, and my heart
withqalbi bi khashyatika. consciousness of You.

Innaka 'ala ma-tasha'-u (O Allah!) You do whatever You wish,
qadeer wa anta hasbun-allahu and You are my Availer and
wa na'mal wakeel. Protector and the best of aid.

DUA AFTER STUDYING

Allahhumma inni astaodeeuka O Allah! I entrust You with what I
ma qara'tu wama hafaz-tu. have read and I have studied.
Faradduhu 'allaya inda (O Allah!) Bring it back to me when
hagati elayhi. I am in need of it.
Innaka 'ala ma-tasha'-u (O Allah!) You do whatever You wish,
qadeer wa anta hasbeeya and You are my Availer and
wa na'mal wakeel. Protector and the best of aid.

DUA WHILE STUDYING SOMETHING DIFFICULT

Allahumma la sahla illama O Allah! Nothing is easy except what
ja-'altahu sahla wa anta taj You have made easy. If You wish, You
'alu al hazana etha shi'ta sahla can make the difficult easy.

DUA FOR ANXIETY

Allahumma inni a'oodhoo bika O Allah! I seek refuge in You from anxiety
minal-hammi walhuzni, wal-'ajzi and sorrow, weakness and laziness,
wal-kasali wal-bukhli wal-jubni, miserliness and cowardice, the burden of
wa dal'id-dayni wa ghalabatir-rajaal debts and from being oppressed by men.

DUA FOR DISTRESS

Allahumma rahmataka arjoo falaa O Allah! It is Your mercy that I hope for
takilnee ilaa nafsee tarfata so do not leave me in charge of my affairs
'aynin wa aslih-lee sha'nee even for a blink of an eye and rectify
kullahu, laa ilaha illa anta for me all of my affairs. None has the right to be worshipped except You.

DUA FOR CONCENTRATION


"Salla-l-laahu alaa Muhammad wa aal-e Muhammad. Allahumma inni as'aluka yaa mudhakkira-l khayr wa faa'ilahu wa-l-aamimira bihi dhakir-ni maa ansaani-hi-shaytan."


"Blessings of god be upon Muhammad and his progeny. O god, I ask you, the one who mentions goodness and actualizes it and commands it, remind me of that which the shaytan makes me forget."

also, remember to read the quran regularly!!!



TOP 10 REVISION TIPS


1. Choose a room to revise where there are no distractions.

2. Know what your aiming for, keep this close to help you review your progress.

3. Make a revision plan in advance and stick to it. Try and revise every day so that you stay in a routine but feel free to reward yourself by doing fewer hours occasionally.

4. Revise topics more than once so that they stay in your long term memory and use prompt cards.

5. Test yourself regularly to see if you can remember what you've learnt. Do this by either trying to write out what you have learnt or by answering questions on the material.

6. Start revising early. The later you leave it the more you will have to learn in the days leading to the exam.

7. Don't skip corners- revise everything you need to know, if you miss something out, it's very likely it will be on the exam.

8. Make a revision table and fill in how much revision you do for each subject each day. It will help you keep the revision balanced and it will motivate you to keep going.

9. If you do a lot of revision reward yourself and if panic sets in, do something else for a while, then take a deep breath and start again with the name of Allah.

10. Take regular 10 minute breaks every 30 to 40 minutes and do something else. Make sure you have enough to eat and drink.- don't push yourself to the limit.

Most importantly make lots of dua to Allah!!!!!


(Inspire Youth)




A Guide to Passing Exams Without Stealing The Papers
Top Tips for revising for exams


Revision is like a buffet… there are many different options (methods) you try different ones out, and then realise you actually like what you didn’t guess you would.

The Basics

Find somewhere quiet to work, somewhere that you feel comfortable.

Take frequent breaks, work in short bursts. Every 30 minutes or so, change topic or subject.

When you're revising, the trick is to be active (doing something with the information, not just reading and crossing your fingers in hope of remembering it later on)

Set a schedule. Promise yourself that you'll start today (important!), at 6 o'clock (for example), and stick to your promise!

Once you're into the routine of revision it won't seem scary.


Tap into your inner self

No, don’t register with the nearest yoga class just yet. I meant discover the method of learning that suits you best (remember the buffet options):

Many people remember things visually - they remember a picture of what they saw when they read the page. If you think that this is the flava’ for you try colouring in and “beautifying” your notes to make them stick in your mind. In the exam you'll find that you can "see" the paper and remember what was there.

Maybe your mind works by remembering sounds. Say things out loud or record your voice and listen to it later.

Some people find that they remember things that they did whilst performing a certain movement, eg. Clicking their fingers. This is called revising "kinaesthetically". Moving around as you work may help you to remember, as will any kind of cutting-and-sticking your notes or any scrap paper.

So which type of mind do you think you have? You're most likely to be a mixture of all of these, but by picking out a few of these ideas that you like the sound of, you can make life much easier.


How to remember stuff

Remind yourself over and over


"Look, Cover, Write, Check"


Remember labelled diagrams


Highlight


Make summaries of the information


Make your own "Flash Cards"


Work out "what could they ask me about this?"


Practice on real exam questions


Be clear about what you're expected to know


Identify your strong and weak areas


Work with somebody else




Other useful sites for revision tips:


http://www.aplustuto...vision-tips.phphttp://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/onelife/educat...sion/tips.shtml



Ways To Strengthen One’s Memory


by Brother Yahya Adel Ibrahîm

It is human nature to be forgetful, as the Arab poet said:
“He is only called man (insân) because of his forgetfulness (nasiyân), and it is only called the heart (al-qalb) because it changes so rapidly (yataqallib).”

In the past they said that the first one to forget (awwal nâsin) was the first man (awwal al-nâs), meaning Adam, peace be upon him. Forgetfulness is something that varies from person to person according to each individual’s nature; some may be more forgetful than others. Some of the things that may help to combat forgetfulness are the following:


1. Keeping away from sin, because the bad effects of sin result in a bad memory and the inability to retain knowledge. The darkness of sin cannot co-exist with the light of knowledge. The following words were attributed to al-Shâfi‘î, may Allâh have mercy on him:

“I complained to [my shaykh] Wakî’ about my bad memory, and he taught me that I should keep away from sin. He said that knowledge of Allâh is light, and the light of Allâh is not given to the sinner.”


Al-Khatîb reported in al-Jâmi‘ (2/387) that Yahya ibn Yahya said:

“A man asked Mâlik ibn Anas, ‘O Abu ‘Abd-Allâh! Is there anything that will improve my memory?’ He said, ‘If anything will improve it, it is giving up sin.’”


When a person commits a sin, it overwhelms him and this leads to anxiety and sorrow which keeps him busy thinking about what he has done. This dulls his senses and distracts him from many beneficial things, including seeking knowledge.


2. Frequently remembering Allâh, may He be glorified, by reciting dhikr, tasbîh (saying‘Subhan Allâh’), tahmîd (‘Al-hamdu Lillâh’ ), tahlîl (‘Lâ ilâha ill-Allâh’) and takbîr (‘Allâhu akbar’), etc. Allâh says (interpretation of the meaning):

“…And remember your Lord when you forget…” [al-Kahf 18:24]


3. Not eating too much, because eating too much makes one sleep too much and become lazy, and it dulls the senses, besides exposing one to the risk of physical diseases. Most of the diseases which we see result from food and drink.

4. Some of the scholars have mentioned certain foods which increase the memory, such as drinking honey and eating raisins and chewing certain kinds of gum resin.

Imâm al-Zuhrî said:

“You should eat honey because it is good for the memory.”


He also said:

“Whoever wants to memorize hadîth should eat raisins.” (From al-Jâmi‘ by al-Khatîb, 2/394)


Ibrâhîm ibn [sth. omitted] said,

“You should chew resin gum, because it is Ways To Strengthen One’s Memory


As they mentioned, too much acidic food is one of the causes of laziness and weak memory.


5. Another thing that can help the memory and reduce forgetfulness is cupping (hijâmah) of the head, as is well known from experience. (For more information see Al-Tibb al-Nabawi by Ibn al-Qayyim). And Allâh knows best.




10 Ways to Boost Your Memory


Everyone forgets things from time to time. But for some people, poor memory can be a perennial problem. The brain never actually loses a memory. It records each one like a computer. (interesting init!)

However, problems with recall begin when we don't practise retrieving this information and so the memories we had become lost. The brain, like other parts of the body, needs physical and mental exercise, together with particular nutrients, to increase the power of memory. Here are 10 things to remember to do in order never to forget anything ...


1 – Eat Soya

According to Professor Sandra File, head of the psychopharmacology research unit at Guy's Hospital in London, isoflavones, the natural plant oestrogens in soya foods, might act on oestrogen receptors in the human brain, particularly those in the hippocampus, a crucial area for memory.

As a result, new nerve connections form more readily. Medical trials revealed that those fed a high soya diet showed improvements in verbal and non-verbal memory and in mental flexibility, all of which are controlled by the brain's frontal lobes. Soya can be added to the diet through natural products such as soya milk or through a recommended daily 50mg soy isoflavone supplement.


2 - Take memory Minerals

Studies at Kings College, London, and the University of Rochester in New York showed that a reduced iron intake can have a detrimental effect on IQ levels and cognitive function.

This is because of lack of iron causes low haemoglobin levels, which affect the supply of oxygen to the brain. Iron also plays an important role in the transmission of signals in the brain. A deficiency of zinc, found in oysters, red meat and peanuts, can also interfere with memory. Take a supplement of 7 to 9mg daily.


3 – Drink Coffee

Caffeine can improve mental and memory performance because it stimulates many regions of the brain that regulate wakefulness, arousal, mood and concentration.

Researchers at the University of Arizona found that older adults who drank half a pint of coffee just before a memory test saw a large improvement in performance compared to those who drank decaffeinated coffee. However, the benefits might be confined to regular coffee drinkers. Others could suffer side effects such as shakiness, anxiety or impaired concentration.

It's still best to drink no more than six cups of coffee a day – those with heart problems should drink less. Too much brewed or percolated coffee can raise blood cholesterol – instant or filter coffee are better choices.


4 – Mental Exercise

Research has shown that mental stimulation keeps the brain healthy and increases the strength of memory.

As we age, it is normal to have changes in memory, but keeping the mind active does diminish weaknesses. Clinical psychologist Ron Bracey suggests using techniques such as puzzles, crosswords and widening cultural and social interests, all of which create different pathways in the brain.


5 – Physical Exercise

Half-an-hour of activity three times a week is enough to bring about significant increase in brain power; says a study at the Duke University Medical Centre in North Carolina.

Exercise improves the heart’s ability to pump blood more effectively. Memory benefits from improved blood flow to specific regions at the front of the brain whose functions include planning, organization and the ability to juggle different intellectual tasks.


6 – Chew Gum

Japanese researchers found that activity in the hippocampus, an area of the brain important for memory, increases while people chew. Recent research suggests that insulin receptors in the brain may be involved too, as chewing releases insulin because the body is expecting food.

But, says Dr Andre Scholey of the University of Northumbria, the simplest reason could be that chewing increases the heart rate, thus improving the delivery of oxygen to the brain and enhancing its cognitive powers.


7 – Take Ginkgo biloba

Ginkgo is the world’s oldest living tree. It has been used for memory enhancement in Eastern cultures for thousands of years.

Dr George Lewith, complementary health consultant to Boots, says Ginkgo improves blood circulation to the brain by dilating blood vessels and increasing its oxygen supply.

Ginkgo also mops up harmful compounds known as free radicals, which are thought to damage brain cells. Advised supplement dose is 120mg a day.


8 – Eat oily fish

Omega 3 fatty acids, found in oily fish, are essential components of brain cell membranes, and their role in cell structure is thought to improve the powers of memory. High concentrations of Omega 3 in the brain and nervous system not only boost learning powers and age-related memory, but also greatly enhance mood.

Omega 3 is a particularly important during foetal development, so pregnant women should have a regular supply. Good sources include fish such as sardines, salmon, herring and mackerel. Sardines are also a rich source of the nutrient choline, which is a key brain chemical associated with memory. Try to eat three portions of oily fish a week or take a supplement of 330mg three times a week.


9 – Rosemary and sage

Essential oil made from rosemary and sage can stimulate the memory, strengthen clarity and awareness and help to relieve mental fatigue. Psychologists at the University of Northumbria tested essential oils from rosemary on memory attention and mood and discovered it made volunteers feel more alter and enhanced their long-term memory by around 15%. Some studies have found that volunteers’ ability to remember lists of words improved by more than 10% if they had taken a capsule of sage oil.


10 – Take vitamin B

B vitamins deliver oxygen to the brain and provide protection against free radicals. They help to sharpen senses and boost memory. Niacin or B3 is particularly good for brain enhancement, while B6 is essential for the manufacture of neurotransmitters, especially mood-enhancing serotonin.

B12 is important for overall health of brain cells. B vitamins are also needed to help the body form acetylcholine, a key brain chemical needed for memory – Daily Mail.




Health & Diet during Exam Periods


Exam periods are always a stressful time, drinking endless cups of coffee to stay awake, snacking on whatever you can find, endless sugar fixes, skipping meals, not eating at all… I mean who has time to eat?

When you do finally manage to eat something you feel sick, not to mention guilty for wasting time when you should have been revising.


Does this sound like YOU? Then…STOP!! You’re not doing yourself any favours and will probably collapse before your exams are over.

Think of your body as a car. If you put in cheap petrol and don’t look after it, it won’t perform as well as you’d like it to. So how can you treat your body badly and then expect it to function at its best?

You need to start treating this priceless asset with some respect? After all you’re relying on it to get you through this difficult time.

Consider eating foods that will help boost your memory and concentration levels.


Do’s:

Drink water - flushes your body of toxins, helps you concentrate and you will feel more alive. Beware though, you will find yourself going to the john more often to empty your bladder.

Have breakfast - most important meal of the day. Try to include big portions of brain boosting foods which are high in the vitamins and minerals you require at this stressful time. Brain boosting foods include fresh fruit, vegetables, seeds and nuts.

Exercise – no don’t start heavy-lifting, you know that’s not what I meant and no you don’t need steroids, you fool! go for a walk or a jog in the park, hit the gym if you can spare the time. Exercise helps relieve stress!




All useful science websites


Biology

http://www.biologymad.com/
http://www.mrothery.co.uk/
http://www.cellsalive.com/
http://users.rcn.com...t/BiologyPages/
http://www.mhhe.com/...y/student/olc2/ human anatomy
http://highered.mcgr.../student_view0/
http://www.dnaftb.org/
http://www.heckgramm...gy/ks5notes.htm



Chemistry

http://www.wbateman....uk/asa2chem.htm
http://chemfinder.cambridgesoft.com
http://www.chemguide.co.uk
http://www.wpbschool...internet.co.uk/
http://www.geocities...andspectroscopy
http://www.exetersch...ts/chempage.htm
http://groups.msn.co.../_whatsnew.msnw
http://www.rod.beavon.clara.net/
http://www.chemistry-react.org/
http://www.wpbschool...internet.co.uk/
http://www.geocities...elbiologypapers
http://www.download....tml?tag=lst-0-5


Physics

http://www.physics.org/
http://advancingphys...nt/webbase.html
http://scienceworld....am.com/physics/
http://www.physicsclassroom.com/
http://www.physicsforums.com/
http://www.kineticbo...hysics/toc.html
http://hyperphysics....ase/hframe.html
http://particleadven...ticleadventure/
http://www.countingthoughts.com/
http://www.bustertests.co.uk/
http://www.spaceandmotion.com/



Here is the maths AS/A2…..

http://math.mdsalih.com/

Edexcel

1. P1-P6
2. S1-S6
3. M1-M6
4. D1-D2
5. AEA Mathematics


OCR

6. STEP I
7. STEP II
8. STEP III


Mark schemes are also available for some papers.

Username: mathmo
Password: p1p6



ps. I’m not sure if all the sites work, so plz 4giv me if they don’t.:)



Coping with exam pressure and stress



Aristotle observed, "the roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet." That bitterness is once again about to be tasted by thousands of budding young minds up and down the country, as they brace themselves during the most critical time in their academic lives - exam season. Whether facing GCSEs, A-Levels or degree finals, the pressure upon young academics will force them into a world of sleepless all-night vigils, endless cups of coffee and nail-biting repetitions. Preparations will be in full swing as they lock themselves away from the outside world, lost in the pages of their textbooks, busy reducing their notes for the umpteenth time in a desperate bid to memorise all that had passed over their heads since their courses began. To most of them, achieving the top grades is of paramount importance, in the hope that it will open doors to further education at the most prestigious establishments, or ease them towards the ultimate goal of a high flying job and incumbent six-figure salary, and all that these will lead to in terms of securing the utmost comfort and pleasure in life.

For many students, the importance of exam success has been drilled into their impressionable young minds from the outset of school life, by parents, teachers and peers. It is thus perhaps inevitable that sitting exams has become one of the most stressful times in a young persons life. Sadly, for a few individuals the enormous pressures amount to more than they can bear, pushing them into a state of anxiety, depression or in the most extreme of cases to suicide. So within the midst of an atmosphere of such immense stresses, the question that arises is how should people cope with the pressures of exams?


Exams-why bother?

In the Capitalist society the pursuit of pleasure through the enjoyment of material pursuits gives meaning and purpose to life. For many who live in such a society, education plays a crucial role in making available such means to the individual and the wider community. It leads to the production of a skilled workforce that can accelerate the material progress, and facilitate the generation of wealth within society; things which are perceived to be vital in ensuring the happiness and well being of all. As a result, a heavy emphasis is placed upon individuals to strive to be successful in exams with the aim of securing the 'fruits' of their hard work; a prosperous career that will be beneficial for the individual and at the same time help to achieve the wider goals of the Capitalist society.

Right from a child's formative years, ideas of success are built into young minds. Children as young as seven are introduced to the rigors of exams such as Key Stage 1, followed by Key Stage 2 at age eleven and Key Stage 3 at age fourteen. These culminate in the all-important GCSEs that will determine the suitability for those who can progress to A-Levels and ultimately university.

This seemingly endless series of tests firmly establishes exam culture in the minds of students, making these the most appropriate means by which to measure success. The constant need to succeed is perpetuated not only by the relentless testing at every stage of educational life, but also the comparison of results in the form of league tables and prize-giving ceremonies. The charity Mind, a mental health group, estimated that the average pupil sits 87 exams during their school life.


Why do people get stressed?

When faced with the pressure to succeed the fear of failure can cause considerable anxiety. In some cases the worries about how parents and peers will react to their failure may surpass even their own concerns. With the thought that their entire future life may hinge on the outcome of exams, it is inevitable that some degree of stress will ensue. This fact is demonstrated by a report issued by the children's charity NSPCC that cited eight out of ten secondary school pupils worry about exams. Similarly in the year 2000 Childline, the children's helpline, received almost 1,000 calls from desperate pupils who needed counselling to cope during the summer exams.

For most individuals exams are characterised by a combination of a desire to do well and a wish to get exams over and done with, each of which can contribute to generating the effects of stress. When subject to the force of such intense pressure as seen in the time of exams, the human body begins to express its anxiety through what is commonly referred to as a 'stress reaction.' Some people are reasonably able to handle the pressures, and the most they will ever experience are the physical signs of nervousness such as 'butterflies' in their stomach, dryness of the mouth or palpitations. However the physical symptoms of stress for others can be more taxing- such as fatigue, dizziness, loss of appetite, migraines and nausea. Psychological symptoms can include anxiety, depression, obsessional behaviours and being unnaturally irritable or subdued. The findings of a survey published in 2001 carried out by the Mental Health Foundation showed that 50% of University students showed signs of clinical anxiety and more than one in 10 suffered from clinical depression.

Perhaps more alarming is the fact that pupils and students are increasingly turning to hard drugs, resorting to binge drinking and even self mutilation in order to deal with the enormous pressure. A spokesperson from the University of Sussex Counselling Service observed that he was seeing more students with mental health problems than ever before. "Twenty years ago, when, I started, it was rare to see people who were suicidal, who had issues of self mutilation or who were taking, for instance hard drugs. Now I think that it constitutes 40% to 50% of my workload. I think there has been a major shift and it has the implication that we are working more as a psychiatric outpost than a counselling post."


The consequences of failure

For a minority of students, the pressure of exam stress becomes overwhelming. In April 1998 on the eve of her A-Levels exams, 18-year-old Buckinghamshire schoolgirl Yolanda McPherson was found hanging at her school. In a separate incident 16 year old Anthony Alderman, who was waiting for his exam results hanged himself at his home in Aylesbury. In both cases, the coroner ruled that exam worries were a significant contributing factor to their deaths.

These two are painful examples of rare but tragic incidents, which may occur when individuals are pushed to the limits of their ability to cope with stress. Nonetheless, the less severe responses of the majority of students have considerable negative effects for the individual and society in general. But do drink, illicit drugs or anti-depressants have to be an inevitable outcome? And more fundamentally, will these measures actually help to solve the underlying problems, which lead to exam stress?


The reality of exams with respect to life

How individuals cope with the pressure of exams is dependent upon their outlook in life. If it is perceived by a student that the life of this world is all there is to live for, then exams can easily become central to their existence. If they consider that their destiny truly lies in their own hands and success or failure is a direct result of their own preparation for exams, then it would be natural for those exams to be the major focal point in their lives. 'Have I revised enough? What will come up in the paper?' 'Will I pass?' These become essential questions, as they deem the course and direction that their life takes depends entirely on their performance.

In the case of many budding non-Muslim academics, who believe in the secular values of Western civilisation, it is easy to see how this can become the case. However, many Muslims have also adopted the same viewpoint, where the prospect of akhirah (afterlife) is perceived as being so far into the future that success in this dunya (the life of the world) takes more importance and thereby becomes a source of much greater anxiety. Thus exams also become central to their existence with the understanding that success in them is the key to the pleasures of this dunya; thereby obligations of worship of their Creator Allah I, are pushed aside to accommodate them. In this way such emphasis is placed upon exams that duties such as prayer, fasting and dawah are completely suspended for the duration in deference to what is seen as a more pressing need.


In reality exams have to be placed into context with respect to the ultimate purpose of life. For Muslims the purpose of life is to seek the pleasure of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) by following what He (subhanahu wa ta'aala) has prescribed; to worship Him (subhanahu wa ta'aala) alone. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) says,



'I have only created jinn and mankind that they may worship Me.' [TMQ Al-Dhariyat: 56]

The Islamic concept of worship is a broad and all-encompassing one. Any action can be made into an act of worship by being aware of the relationship of that action with the Islamic Shari'ah. While studying of a basic level of divine knowledge is considered as an individual obligation on every Muslim, the study of 'worldly' knowledge is considered mubah (permitted). Therefore, studying for exams, gaining qualifications and pursuing a career in fields that do not contradict with Islam are all permitted. However for such pursuits to become the driving forces in people's lives, such that it leads to a compromise in performance of their Islamic obligations is not only haram (prohibited) but also completely irrational.

Al-Mustawrid Al-Fihry related from the Prophet (salAllahu alaihi wasallam) that he said,


'The Dunya, as compared to the Akhirah (the Hereafter), is just like when one of you dips his finger in the sea! Let him see how much (water) it (his finger) will carry.' (Sahih Al-Jami')

To pursue or yearn for a blissful dunya that could be ten years for one individual or a hundred years for another is incomparable when faced with the prospects of a blissful eternity in akhira. The correct view as to how we approach the dunya is beautifully encapsulated in the following saying, which enjoins to 'Work for this world as if you were to live forever, and work for the next world as if you were to die tomorrow.' The meaning follows that if one were to die tomorrow, one would be very intent indeed on erasing all of one's past sins and accumulating as much merit as possible to protect oneself from the hellfire. If on the other hand, one expects to live forever, one would obviously be in no hurry to erect palaces, accumulate wealth or concentrate all energy on pursuing and enjoying the worldly pleasures in the shortest possible time; as one would literally have 'all the time in the world.'

When placed in context with exams, it is simply that the world does not end if exams do not go well or entry to the University you sought does not transpire. With respect to the Day of Judgement, the value of a lifetime spent in pursuing education of a worldly discipline such as science, mathematics or literature, whether it was for the sake of securing a career or just for education in itself, is insignificant when compared to the value of a divine duty such as prayer, fasting or Hajj. It is important therefore to put the notion of exam success in its proper context.


Islamic concepts relevant to exams

Bearing this in mind, there is no prohibition over studying and education with respect to non-religious knowledge. Indeed, such knowledge may in some cases be used for the benefit of the Muslims. Thus, if education is undertaken, then it is important to carry the correct perspective when considering exams. Doing so is the key to preventing worry over exams from being an obstacle to health, well-being and religious integrity.

When faced with exams the correct response of the believers is to turn to the aqeedah of Islam wherein lies the remedy for all anxiety and stresses. The destiny (qada) of every man and woman has been pre-determined by Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) from the moment we are placed in the wombs of our mothers.

Our provision in this world and how much we earn (rizq), and how long we will live (ajal) are all issues that have been set and given their due measure. Therefore, regardless of which subject or course we choose to study, or what may be our performance in exams, we do not rely on these things to guarantee our future. Rather, the Muslim relies solely upon Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) for providing everything, from the money he will earn and live with, to the very air that he breathes. Indeed there are many unemployed graduates surviving on the breadline, and many uneducated entrepreneurs living in the lap of luxury.

Therefore the outcome of exams, the professions embarked upon and the salaries earned are all determined according to the will of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala). All that lies in the control of the believer is to exert his utmost best towards preparing for exams as well as to place his reliance upon Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) (to make tawwakul). Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) said,


'Whosoever puts his trust in God, He will suffice him.' [TMQ At-Talaq: 3]

and,

'Put your trust in Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) if you are believers.' [TMQ Al-Maidah: 26]


However, it is important to note that relying upon Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) for the results does not mean that we do not need to work or pursue employment to earn our provision. Nor does it mean neglecting studies, and taking a lazy approach to exam preparation. It is incorrect to feel that preparation is useless, claiming that what Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) has decreed will come to pass, so therefore study is unnecessary.

On the authority of Anas b. Malik, it is told that a man came riding his camel and he asked, 'Oh Messenger of God, shall I leave my camel untied and trust in God?' He (salAllahu alaihi wasallam) replied,


'Both tie your camel and trust in God.'

The correct understanding of this narration is that it is a divine injunction for the individual to have absolute trust and dependence in Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) alone irrespective of anything else. Before, during and after any action. At the same time all necessary and appropriate preparations for any intended action or endeavour must be taken. So preparation and revision are paramount and the student is accountable for the effort and energy that he or she put into sitting their exams.

In this way, the Muslim who is undertaking exams must acquaint himself with a clear understanding of the basic Islamic concepts - knowledge of the value of this dunya in relation to the akhira, awareness of the ahkam shari'ah - the divine rules pertaining to study and exams, the confidence that Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) controls the destiny and the outcome of actions, and the observance of the injunction to make adequate preparations for every endeavour. Above all, he should turn to Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala), asking Him (subhanahu wa ta'aala) for success in exams and all of his pursuits.

When armed with this mentality, it is inevitable that the profound faith of the observant Muslims will lead to his experiencing the abating of anxiety, and its replacement with acceptance and contentment with the awareness that Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) knows best, and is in control of all affairs.

These same concepts will also allow the believer to face the results of exams with the correct approach. If Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) in His wisdom has chosen failure as the result, the believer's trust in Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) will give him the strength to greet his result with sabr (patience) as Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) says,



"And be patient with your Lord's decree, for surely you are in Our sight." [ TMQ At-Tur: 48]


Conversely when granted success the response should be to receive it with abundant praises and thanks to Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala).

Suhaib reported that Allah's Messenger (salAllahu alaihi wasallam) said:



'Strange are the ways of a believer for there is good in every affair of his and this is not the case with anyone else except in the case of a believer for if he has an occasion to feel delight, he thanks (God), thus there is a good for him in it, and if he gets into trouble and shows resignation (and endures it patiently), there is a good for him in it.' (Sahih Muslim).

As preparation draws to a close and exam papers are about to be opened, anxiety and stress will be a natural response for many. However with the knowledge that the outcome lies with the will of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'aala) and that the purpose of life is not subject to these exams, Islam has given the believer a way of relief from the excesses which are so often seen to accompany those who undertake exams in the pressured environment of a secular, Capitalistic society.


#3 -tawakkul-

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 01:48 AM

jus to add, remember to make lots and lots of dua to Allah, remember to pray for each other, and don't stress yourself tooooooooo much, and [;;gluck::] everyone, wish you all the best, so happy revising...[(;sis)]

one more thing...dear mods/admins, i would much appreciate it if will be possible for u guys to make this thread sticky...ppplllllzzzzzzz....thankz, JZK!:) also, to everyone else, plz feel free to add more useful stuf to this big fat "EXAM ESSENTIALS" thread...

tk cre all,
[(ws)]
ur sista afsana[(Csis)]


#4 fazza

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 05:04 AM

hommma god! fantastic. sticky in how to help muslims - jzk sis!!!

#5 Smurf

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 11:08 AM

OH.....MY....GOD!!!!!!! AFSANA NOW LETS JUS WAIT FOR YOU TO ACTUALLY START REVISING.......THE LONGER YOU LEAVE IT THE MORE STRESSED UR GONNA GET.....GOT SO MUCH TO REVISE.

MAN I HATE PHYSICS......I CAN'T STAND REVISING MECHANICS.

#6 -4 U 2 NV-

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 12:18 PM

WOW sis afsana on a roll WOAH So much info that will come to use thanks sis...

#7 -tawakkul-

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 10:15 PM

^^^^no worries bro, and jzk bro fazza for making this thread sticky, i hope it will be beneficial for all, coz it was certainly pretty useful for me.

ps. smurf u telin me sis...i stil don't know wer to start!!!

#8 Mukhlisah

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Posted 24 March 2006 - 06:47 AM

jzk afsana,im sure the sites will come in very handy.
U gotta start revisin girl..u kno what they say..u need at least 3 months to revise all te material properly!
starting is the hardest part, but just go for it!

#9 Mukhlisah

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Posted 24 March 2006 - 06:51 AM

the maths site is brill!!! Beter start doing all those papers NOW! Gosh looking thru this is jus makin me realise how much i gotta get thru[(zip)]

#10 sistah

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Posted 25 March 2006 - 03:57 PM

JZK sis reali helpful!!!!!

#11 pearl_of_wisdom

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Posted 28 March 2006 - 01:52 PM

[(s)]

thanks sis, its really helpful and good luck everyone with your revision and exams [(;(})]

#12 Yasmin

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Posted 04 April 2006 - 03:19 PM

niice afsana - jzk luv the duas at the beginning.

#13 muslimpal

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Posted 10 April 2006 - 10:05 PM

yeah Afsana WHY DONT U START REVSING????? AND U CALL ME SAD, WHEN I DO!!! (HEHEH)

#14 -tawakkul-

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 01:18 AM

lol, wel ex-cuse-moi! i did start revisin today, YAY!!!! and did bout 5-10 mins today, man nearly had a heart attack coz i got sooooooooo much to do!!!!! and then needed to take a break![(ha)][(lol)]

#15 MAX energy

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 03:46 PM

Is anyone going to Philip Alan’s revision conferences? http://www.philipall....aspx?page=HOME

Does it worth it? Can anyone recommend good revision book for edexcel chemistry……I haven’t started my revision yet (forget revision-I don’t even know half of my stuff)……..i am panicking! Can anyone suggest me how to get a decent grade in chemistry (provided the fact that I haven’t started my revision and ONLY 20 DAYS OR SO LEFT FOR EXAMS)………..



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