Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.
My primary test preparation is creating mnemonic devices. I have always considered myself right-brain dominant, and my imagination tends to get the best of me. Studying was initially a chore before I realized I could make the test content compliment my learning style. My family is incredibly arts-heavy, so music dominates our household. I realized that flashcards and study guides were not beneficial when I was simply looking at words to memorize; nothing stuck and I was feeling frustrated and defeated after hours of attempted studying. However, I knew that songs got stuck in my head all the time from my siblings! Involuntary Music Imagery (INMI), or otherwise known as “earworms”, are songs that fire the auditory cortex and put songs on a loop in our head. “Earworms” are distracting invisible parasites that the brain has difficulty shutting out, and often make us replay the same melodic tune in our heads for hours at a time. When I realized my relationship with “earworms” could be purposeful instead of inhibitory, I started creating parodies to recall information.
To this day, I can still recall the 45 presidents to the tune of “Oh, My Darling, Clementine.” If it were not for Katy Perry’s top hits, I would have struggled significantly with geometric theorems. Even my friends, whose vocal abilities equaled that of screech owls, found enjoyment in this style of learning. This way of storytelling not only challenged my memorization, but also my vocabulary, rhyming ability, alliterative skills, acronym usage, and musical understanding. Especially now, as I continue my Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science at Trine University, I will be incredibly dependent on mnemonic devices to aid in my retention of anatomical labels, medical terminology, and required physical therapy lingo.
Hannah from Indiana