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

As I wake up on a Saturday morning. I rush out of bed to quickly claim the shower, way before my brothers wake up and steal the bathroom. As my family gathers around for breakfast, I noticed my father eyeing us with a concern yet skeptical face. His eyes in disbelief, assessed me as If I was on trial. Then on the spot, I remembered it was his birthday.

This moment of my life acts as an incentive to help further better my memory. Whether for tests at school or a family member's birthday, I rely on the science of encoding and visualization. The test preparation practices I implement are from techniques I learned that help me retain more information efficiently.

As I read through study guides or note cards, I pair it to a visualization in my head. By integrating the words and visuals, I have a better time recalling information with ease. Aimlessly reading information is ineffective and counterproductive as the words go through your head. I repeat the information in reiteration to familiarize myself with the semantics. And in a moment of a real test, going by a familiar word triggers the visualization I had retained.

This practice works great for me especially in my classes such as AP Psychology and AP Statistics. In Psychology, where the many terms and abundance of information can overwhelm a student, it is crucial to develop encoding skills. In AP Statistics, I retain my knowledge and remembrance of interpretations the same way. My personal favorite is “if the P is Low, Reject the Ho!”, meaning if the P-value is less than 5% we reject the null hypothesis.

In this day and age, there are a plethora of online resources to assist students in studying. From videos to websites on the subject matter; It can be easy to get lost in the mass amount of resources. However, I believe my test preparation allows me to fully take advantage of these resources in a successful way, while simultaneously immersing myself in the intellectual pursuit of knowledge.

Thinh from Illinois
High School Senior
Mather High School