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

For the past two years I have been participating in full-time college study through a dual-enrollment program, which has given me significant experience with self-directed learning and exam preparation.
To simplify future review, I highlight passages in textbooks and take notes on any important information during lectures, to retrieve it later when I am preparing for an exam. If many points in my notes are related to the same topic (such as variations in physical development for men and women, for example) and involve numeric data, I may arrange them in a chart. In a compact form, this information is both simpler to find during an open-note test and more comprehensible, because the relationships between data are apparent.
I always review notes, highlighted textbook sections, and Powerpoints before a test. If there is a study guide, I fill it in using the aforementioned sources, and if something is lacking I may re-read the appropriate sections of the textbook or otherwise look further into that topic.
Not all tests are open-note, and one of the most effective ways to memorize and understand information is to apply it. It is in application that terms become meaningful and miscomprehensions are revealed. When studying cell division in a biology class, I felt that I had grasped the concept after listening to lectures and re-reading my textbook. However, when presented with a worksheet where I needed to describe and depict every step of mitosis and miosis for a fly, I realized that I had misunderstood important details. It was a tedious assignment; yet after completing it and discussing the mistakes with my professor, I gained a more thorough knowledge of the processes and passed the exam for this class with an A. When an instructor is not available to explain a concept, I find that online explanation videos can be very helpful for technical disciplines.
Finally, I found it effective to study for about fifteen minutes each evening four or five days before the test.

Allison from Washington
High School Senior
Lynden Academy