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

For me, quality test preparation begins with note taking. It is important to filter out what's important from what's not. The pertinent information given during lecture tends to be material that's repeated, written on the board, and or emphasized. Once I acquire the appropriate knowledge from lecture, I then begin my test preparation. I start by compiling all my notes from a given unit and I create a study guide. I put the information in chronological order, highlight/bolden key terms, and color code information from different units. Once this is completed I start to read through my study guide in no particular fashion. After a few read throughs, I evaluate what information starts to stick, and what doesn't. I then focus my read throughs on the information that seems the least familiar. Once I find my self with a decent understanding of all the material I test myself. Eventually after testing myself various amounts of times, the information begins to resonate with me. I reach this point of information retention around 12-24 hours prior to the exam. At this point I make sure I do the best to get my body prepared for the exam. An ample amount of sleep the night before the exam is crucial to insure that the brain is functioning at it's best. I also make sure to stay hydrated and eat a large meal before hand for the same reason. Although sleep is important, I wake up early on exam day for extra studying. I find that reading through the information a few times before the exam helps keep the information fresh in my mind. This lets me move through questions faster, which gives me some extra time to work on challenging questions. This is especially useful for exams that are proctored and or timed.

Nick from Oregon
College Junior
Simpson University