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

Over the years, I have developed test preparation practices that work best for me. Firstly, it was helpful to recognize that I retain more information when I study over a period of time. These practices do not all happen in one night. Now, once I find a location to study in, with minimal distractions, I begin to organize all the materials that will be on the test into one place. Seeing all the work that I will be reviewing at once makes the process less daunting later.
Sometimes, teachers provide study guides, but other times I have to make my own. It is important for me to write out this information in a way that is easy to understand. My study guides are made to benefit me, so there is no need to make them confusing. My format often looks like an outline with key topics to review. Then, I write out, in detail, all that I know on the different topics in the study guide. After this, the topics with sparse information become my, “Focus Areas.” I spend more time researching and recording information about these topics. Later, I read the entire study guide out loud, to make an auditory connection with the information. After this, I give myself a break. This enforces the idea of spreading out study time. At a later time, I reread my study guide and add additional notes in a different color. This helps me make visual connections to the content I am reviewing. Afterwards, I review the information out loud again and put it away. Both the visual and auditory connection of reviewing the information are helpful, because when recalling information, I can refer to either the color or sound of a word. This part of the process continues in various locations. I would rather not associate the information with one specific location, because I believe it is important to know the information no matter what place I am in. Finally, once I have created and reviewed my guide, I feel prepared for a test. I hope these strategies benefit you as well!

Aliya from New York
High School Senior
Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts