Testing Tips 101

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Bryanne Elie

Which one of these testing tips works for you? Which one of these would you like to try?

Bryanne Elie, Staff Writer

Testing season is right around the corner, and many of you are probably wondering how to properly prepare for all of your exams. You may get some preparation in school, but it is vital to prepare at home.

I haven’t always been the best test taker, but now as a Junior, I have acquired many study skills to be successful and I’d like to share them with you.

  1. Quizlet

Quizlet is a free resource to study any topic necessary that requires memorization. From math formulas to historical dates, you can use Quizlet to try and memorize anything you need. I highly suggest making your own Quizlet for two reasons. Firstly, a lot of the time, you may find a Quizlet that has the subject you’re looking for but not the level of curriculum that you need to study. For example, you might want to study biology, but you’re in 9th grade and sometimes the quizlets that show up are for college-level students. That can complicate things, so making your own Quizlet will ensure that you’re studying what you need to study.

Secondly, when you make your own Quizlet, you’re subconsciously already studying. Trying to find the definition of the term is already testing you to figure out what it is and introduces you to the content you’re studying.

If you’re totally new to the content you’re trying to study, using the “learn” tool can help familiarize what you need to study. I find that the next best tool within a Quizlet is flashcards. I highly recommend answering with the definition to truly test if you know the term. Furthermore, after you do well with the flashcards, using the shuffling tool is good to eliminate the dependency on the order of the words for memorization.

 

2. Utilizing Homework

When it comes to subjects like math and science, sometimes a Quizlet isn’t enough, since simply memorizing it doesn’t show if you’re able to apply what you’ve acquired. So, what I do is use my old homework, with the right answers, or practice questions online, with answers, to truly test if I can apply what I’ve memorized to various forms of problems. This ensures that I’ll be ready for any possibilities that I might face on the test. I usually do 3-5 questions on the topic, but if I struggle with other concepts, I will do a lot more until I’m comfortable.

 

3. Study time

Now with all of the study methods, the best time to do all you’ve done is at night. It’s actually scientifically proven that the best time to study is towards your bedtime. According to the National Institute of Health, “During a night of sleep, some memories are strengthened.” However, this doesn’t mean you should cram everything the night before, especially if you’re not familiar with the topic. Doing a little bit each night until your exam can help you better grasp what you need to retain.

I also got to ask some other people about their study tips as well. Those include:

  1. Start Early

Compiling everything early helps alleviate the stress of having to prepare everything last minute so you can focus on just studying.

2. Have a Plan

Knowing what you’re going to study helps discipline you into actually getting things done. You can achieve that by planning to do things like using quizlets, watching videos, or using Khan Academy.

3. Be Flexible

Be open to change, since it’s not going to be easy to accomplish everything you want to do perfectly. So, there will be some things that you’ll have to prioritize over others to be able to study overall.

4. Be Efficient

Take out any distractions like the TV or your phone so you won’t be tempted to forget studying. Also, taking┬ámini breaks while you study helps encourage you to study enough until you can reward yourself with a break again. Setting a timer will help you stay on task as well.

5. Utilize Resources Available to You

Course syllabuses, especially for AICE and AP courses, are really helpful since they outline exactly what you need to focus on. So, using that along with the resources that teachers provide like study guides and notes, helps tremendously when studying.

I hope that these tips and advice will help you as you’re preparing for your exams, but please remember to prioritize your well-being first as that is more important than the outcome of your exams.