To maintain focus during exams, there are several tools and practices suggested by in the :

  1. Visual-Based Tools: Aligning cognitive focus with overt visual focus can enhance concentration. Using blinders like a hoodie or cap to limit the visual field can help reduce distractions and improve focus. Practicing visual focus on a single location for 30 seconds to 3 minutes can develop the ability to focus and refocus better, engaging the prefrontal cortex and frontal eye fields 1.

  2. Acetylcholine and Alpha-GPC: Increasing acetylcholine transmission in the brain enhances focus. Alpha-GPC is a compound that personally uses and recommends for improving the ability to concentrate, taken 10 to 20 minutes before a focused task at doses of 300 mg to 600 mg 2.

  3. Warming Up for Focus: Just as physical exercise requires warm-up, so does mental work. Gradually ramping up neurochemicals like epinephrine, adrenaline, acetylcholine, and dopamine helps in dropping into deeper focus over time. The process of focusing is dynamic and requires patience 3.

    Visual Focus and Cognitive Focus

    Andrew explains how our cognitive focus follows our overt visual focus and how limiting our visual field can help enhance our cognitive focus. He also discusses a practice of visually focusing on one location for a given period of time to improve focus and refocusing abilities, which recruits certain elements of the prefrontal cortex and frontal eye fields.

    Huberman Lab

    Focus Toolkit: Tools to Improve Your Focus & Concentration | Huberman Lab Podcast #88
  4. Deliberate Defocus: After a period of intense focus, deliberately defocusing and engaging in menial tasks can help recharge the brain's metabolic energy. Avoiding phone use during breaks can contribute to better focus when returning to work 4.

  5. Meditation and Refocusing: Meditation is largely a refocusing practice. During meditation, the more you catch your mind wandering and bring it back to focus, the more you improve your ability to focus. Practice refocusing during meditation to enhance this skill 5.

These practices, when incorporated into your routine, may greatly assist in improving concentration during exams. Remember, building focus is a gradual process and requires consistent practice.