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

The Future of Test Prep: Finding Your Own Path to Success
Jake Galiatsos

Finding the best test preparation is very difficult and can often be explicitly designed for the individual; however, I will share with you the best study plans and strategies that I have found successful in the past.

For comprehensive tests, there are many different methods that I combine to be to most successful. I gather all the material and spread it out over a large table. It is nice to see everything you will need to work through at once. I first look at the PowerPoints and textbooks. After reading through both sources, I will outline the textbook and highlight key terms. If there is a study guide, I will review this first and look for the key concepts throughout the presentation slides and textbook.

After all the main concepts are looked through, now it is time for in-depth analysis and memorization. Flashcards can be used when there is a lot of key terms or ideas that are similar to one test. As the date of the test comes closer, I begin to start talking out loud and explaining the material to myself, parents, or friends. If you can talk about the content with any expertise, you will be able to answer questions with accuracy on an exam.

Practice tests are also a vital resource to take advantage of if available. By now, I will know the information pretty well and can begin a final review of all the material listed above. Within a few days before the exam, I will review the notes I outlined in the book and the PowerPoint lectures. Any notes from class will also be looked at. Then the flashcards and previous tests will be repeatedly reviewed. Finally, one more session of talking it out and teaching the subject matter happens.
The most important advice I have is to find what works best for you. The better you know a topic, the better you will do on the actual test. The only way of getting better is by practicing and doing the material repeatedly until confidence is reached.

Jake from Michigan
College Sophomore
Case Western Reserve University