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


The most surprising and helpful test preparation technique I learned in high school was highlighting your notes. I didn’t believe it would work, but it was the best approach to help me learn. Before I understood how helpful it could be, I believed highlighting your notes was a waste of time. However, I was wrong; highlighting your notes helped my organizational skills, made my work more efficient, and made finding vocab, dates, and names easier.
My least favorite subject in school is history, because the subject has a great deal of words to memorize such as names, places, and dates. Throughout my freshman and sophomore years of high school, my notes were a mess and all over the place. I was still able to get decent test scores until my junior year. That is when I started taking a history class from a local college. The first test I took ended in failure, and every test after that was the same. I would study every day for fifteen minutes, but this did not improve my history grade. My failing grade helped me to see I needed to change how I prepared for the history test. The technique that helped was highlighting the notes. For example, I used to glance at vocab words, but it meant I was not really studying them. As a result, I found myself struggling with words on the test and asking, “Was this on the unit outline?” So, during the second quarter, I started highlighting my notes.
My notes became gloriously colored. I used red for names, green for place, and yellow for battles, for example. This technique significantly improved my test scores. In addition, I would see the vocab words in other texts and recognize them.
In college, there will be more vocab words that I have to memorize. Therefore, I will definitely continue using this technique as I continue being in school. Though many of my classmates find highlighting a waste of time, it has helped me tremendously.

Yoshihiro from Wisconsin
High School Senior
Elkhart Lake - Glenbeaulah High School