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

Preparing for a test is often extremely stressful, especially if the test is a final and determines if you pass a class or not. I have found the one the best ways to prepare for a test and reduce my stress is to make studying a game. First, you must determine what it is you need to study. If you need to read a book, put an M&M at the beginning of each paragraph and you can eat it once you have read the previous paragraph and wrote a one-sentence summary on it. This will help you to complete the reading and have a small summary of each paragraph to read over before the test! If you need to study vocabulary or terms, I recommend making a Quizlet (free) to help you study. This app helps you learn the vocabulary through a series of games and quizzes and then generates a test so you can see if you have the information memorized. If this isn’t enough incentive for you, each time you complete a round, take a small break to walk around or have a small treat, such as a skittle or two. Using Quizlet and the M&M trick have really helped me to stay motivated while studying. Another important aspect of studying is to take small breaks.

It is extremely easy to cram study the day before a test and think you are making a lot of progress, but the truth is the philosophy of ‘cram the night before, stay up late and drink coffee’ is not the best. Nonetheless, we all do it. One of the things I have learned during my night before, panic, cram session is that I have to take breaks. I know it seems counterintuitive for a cram session, but I find that if I take a 15-minute break every 50 minutes I study, I am able to study and remember a lot more information. Another thing I do differently during my cram sessions is I don’t eat or drink a lot of sugary things because they always just make a crash sooner. I drink three or four cups of tea throughout the night and eat apples and an occasional piece of chocolate (m&m). This also makes me feel better the next day during the actual test.

Harlyn from California
College Freshman
University of Victoria