My Exam Year Advice

Recently I produced this video for my colleagues in my department who are about to enter the exam year. (In my English department, PhD students in rhetoric and composition, creative writing, and literature spend most of their third year reading two lists of texts—about 100 texts in all—in preparation for their exams. They spend two days writing at home with their notes, and then cap it off with a 90-minute oral exam.)

Although much of my advice is contextual to my program’s specific situation—for example, I was able to choose about 75% of my texts, in consultation with my examiners—I hope others might find this advice and my perspectives helpful, too.

And if you have more to add in the way of helping others through the exam process, please leave more ideas in the comments.

(Note: if you’d like to more easily jump around within the video itself, click here to view it on YouTube, where I provide bookmarks.)

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