Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.

You can’t remember what you never knew. The most important part of every study session is being engaged in the learning process beforehand. Trying to memorize a whole semester’s worth of content for the final exam simply isn’t realistic. Relearning content that you completed in class is faster, and it also allows one to understand more complex issues that were misunderstood initially. Personally, I’ve had to learn arduously that only quality work is useful when studying, because of the AP class I took my Freshman year. I had to learn that notes aren’t helpful if you rewrite the textbook, and was able to understand how to be concise and focused on the content I needed. I have also learned that sectioning and dating your notes can help you access the information quickly.

Repetition is the best way to gain long term knowledge, and study groups are very beneficial for this objective. I get together with my study group about 3 times a week to ask questions on content I don’t understand and review content that others need help with. Teaching my peers how to answer a problem correctly helps me develop a more thorough understanding for when I need to study it on my own. This is an aspect that is extremely helpful with people in the same classes, because they can ask subject specific questions that I might need to clarify myself.

During my personal studying, I make flashcards that color coordinate with the sections I previously created in my notes. On the back of the flashcards I write the essential information, like statistics or formulas, that help me remember the larger content that I’m trying to memorize. Flashcards also serve an alternate purpose of helping me review right before the test. Looking at the color of the word on the first side can help me remember everything I had written, and allow me to accessibly recall the information during the test. This three step process has helped me solidify knowledge enough to excel as Valedictorian at my school.

Taylor from Nevada
High School Senior
Spring Valley High School