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

I'll admit, I'm not the strongest test taker. I used to freeze up until I discovered my own system that helps me stay calm, and provides soothing colors to get me through. My best preparation practices involve a multi-colored, fully organized system. Whenever I take notes, teachers and classmates alike are always asking me two things. 1- why do I put so much time into my notes and 2- can I teach them? It's always fun to see people watching me take meticulous notes and then build study guides based on that. I prefer to start with erasable highlighters and thin line markers.
Step 1. I create the title, make it big and bold and often related to the subject.
Step 2. I create an outline. But this is no ordinary outline. This one has the category, vocabulary words relevant to the category, and helpful hints within it. I then expand on the next bullets with deeper notes and key phrases.
Step 3. Each category gets a different color marker/pen for memory purposes. When recalling the information, I can then associate the pink phrases with the pink titles, etc.
Step 4. When studying I go back and recall the information, coupling it with additional texts from the book or online article, adding in color coded boxes to accompany.
Step 5. Depending on how intense the study session is, I'll use my erasable highlighters to highlight some pertinent info that my instructor has noted will DEFINITELY be on the test.
When it's time to go back to the notes from mid-term to finals, I can then access the notes, and include color coded post it flags to assist in going into my notebook to quickly access the information. This method has carried me through my entire school career and I can't wait to implement them as I enter college.

A. Joelle from Georgia
High School Senior
Druid Hills High School