A Muslim must put all trust in Allah when he faces tribulations of this world. A student should, thus, seek Allah’s help, do his best, try all halal means to his end, based on this hadith in which Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) quoted the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) as saying: “A strong believer is better and is more lovable to Allah than a weak believer, and there is good in everyone, (but) cherish that which gives you benefit (in the Hereafter) and seek help from Allah and do not lose heart.” (Muslim)
Dear students, here are some tips that will benefit you in your exams:
– Resort to Allah with du`a’ with whatever wording you like. You can implore Him saying, “My Lord! Relieve my mind and ease my task for me.”
– Go to bed early to wake up fresh and be on time.
– Take all necessary tools with you, because good preparation helps you to concentrate and answer well.
– Remember to recite the du`a’ of leaving the house:
“In the Name of Allah, I have put my trust in Allah, there is neither might nor p
ower but in Allah! O Allah, I ask refuge in You from stumbling and from being made to stumble, from straying and from being made to stray, from doing wrong to others and from being wronged by others, and from misunderstanding and from being misunderstood.”

– Don’t forget to draw your parents’ pleasure; their du`a’ for you is answered by Allah.
– Start with saying “Bis millah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim” (in the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful). It is generally recommended for a Muslim to begin every permissible act with these words, as they entail Allah’s blessings, support and success.
– Be conscious of Allah in dealing with your colleagues. Do not let your fears and worries spread to them. Try to make the atmosphere optimistic. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) urged optimism and liked to hear encouraging words on setting out for something. When he (peace and blessings be upon him) heard of a people who named their son Suhayl, meaning “easy,” he prayed for them, “May Allah make things easy for you.” So be optimistic concerning yourself and your colleagues, and be sure that you will pass the exam successfully by Allah’s Grace.
– Remembrance of Allah wards off worry and tension. If you find any question difficult, pray to Allah to make it easy for you. Sheikh Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah bless his soul) used to pray to Allah whenever he found anything difficult, saying: “O You Who taught Ibrahim, teach me; O You Who made things understandable to Sulayman, make them so for me.”
– Choose your seat during the exam, if possible, and sit with your back upright.
– Read through all the exam first. Educational research recommends spending 10 percent of the total exam time to read all the questions carefully, determine the keywords, and schedule the remaining time for the questions.
– Divide your time so that you can answer the easy questions first and the difficult ones afterwards. While you read the questions, write some helping notes and remarks.
– Begin with the questions that you know best, turn to the more difficult questions, and leave the most difficult, those that will take much time, and those that are worth fewer marks for later.
– Be patient and take your time while answering the questions and do not be hasty, as the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Patience is imbued by Allah, and rush behavior is insinuated by Satan.” (Sound hadith, Sahih Al-Jami`)
– Concentrate while answering multi-choice questions. If you are sure of the right answer, don’t leave a space for doubt. If you are not sure of the right answer, eliminate the wrong options in the first place and then choose the most likely to be right. Once you choose an answer, do not change it unless you come to know that it is wrong, as you may lose marks in this way. Educational research has proven that, in case of uncertainty, the right answer is usually the one that appeals to the student in the first place.
– When you do a written exam, think carefully before you start an answer. Write some guidelines and keywords, arrange your thoughts, and write them in the order you wish to reveal them.
– Write the main points of your answer at the beginning so that the teacher who evaluates the exam can grasp them on the spot; if they are not prominent, the teacher may not notice them when reading in a hurry.
– Assign 10 percent of the total time of the exam to review your answers. Be patient while doing so, especially in reviewing mathematical problems. Resist your desire to hand in the answer paper before the due time, and do not be influenced by your colleagues who submit their answer papers hurriedly. Their haste may only be a sign of desperation.
– If, after the exam, you discover that you answered some questions wrong, do not feel depressed or desperate. Rather, be content with Allah’s decree and remember the hadith of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): “. . . and if anything (in the form of trouble) comes to you, don’t say: If I had not done that, it would not have happened so and so, but say: Allah did that what He had ordained to do. And your ‘if’ opens the (gate) for the Satan” (Muslim). Also learn a lesson from that situation, so that in the future you should prepare yourself well and not be hasty.
– Know that cheating is prohibited in any subject. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “He who cheats us does not belong to us.”
– Cheating in exams is a form of transgression and a prohibited channel to get higher marks and certificates undeservingly. Helping someone to cheat is also prohibited, as it is cooperating in the course of sin and transgression. So keep yourself away from prohibited acts and refuse any offer to let you cheat, and Allah the Almighty will make you in no need of any such acts. Whoever abandons some act for the sake of Allah, will be compensated by Allah with something more precious.
– Moreover, you must forbid evil and resist it as best as you can, so long as this would not entail any harm for you. You should inform the supervisors of any prohibited act during the exam, as this is not backbiting. It is rather an application of the divine injunction to Muslims to forbid the evil.
– You can advise those who sell exams to students and the latter who buy them. These and others who publish the exams through the Internet and other mass media, and those who facilitate cheatin
g should all fear Allah. Tell your colleagues that cheating is prohibited and earnings from it are ill-gotten. Instead of spending the time in preparing for cheating, students should study their lessons, answer model exams, and cooperate with any study groups before the exam. This would actually be better for them.
– Finally, remember the greatest examination is in the grave and on the Day of Judgment, and consider what you have prepared for it. Try to apply the means of delivery from Hell-Fire. Allah the Almighty says: “Only he who is saved far from the Fire and admitted to the Garden will have attained the object (of Life)” (Al `Imran: 185).