We all have our own strategies for clearing the high hurdles when it comes to exams. From the slow, steady plodders who take a long run up to the late night, caffeine fuelled crammers; our exam approach is as unique as our fingerprint.


Don’t recognise yourself in either description above? Ah, you’re one of them – a mascot type. A superstitious, gonk botherer.

And you’re not alone. A recent poll suggests one in three students admit to wearing lucky pants in the exam hall, with others turning to lucky pens, jewellery, charms and teddies as their spiritual guide through those tricky timed tests.

65% of those polled said they were superstitious, with 33% becoming even more so as exams get nearer.

Others take a more scientific approach. Some 60% of the 2,000 polled said they changed their diet before exams because they believe some foods will boost their brain power and memory. More than half take up eating oily fish (53%) and 46% chow down on extra fruit and veg. Food for thought.

Meanwhile, at Scotland’s Aberdeen University a stress-busting “puppy room” has been introduced for students in an effort to dispel those pre-examination nerves through the medium of fluff.

Undergraduates get 15-minute puppy-petting sessions with the cutest bitches on campus in a scheme that works on two fronts – helping anxious humans relax while giving puppies the social time they need to aid their development. The puppies will eventually be trained as guide dogs – it’s win win.

The scheme is thought to have originated in North American universities and, no word of a lie, Harvard Medical School now has dogs on site which students can borrow, just like books.

BARKING mad or STROKE of genius?


Do you have any quirks or superstitions you have used to make it through exams? Use the comment box to share them with us!

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