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

I have learned to prepare for tests, quizzes, midterms and finals while getting amazing grades. Study smarter, not harder. Often students struggle with test preparation skills because they are not aware of their learning style. It’s very important for a student to know their learning style, and how people with their learning style can be successful. When I started classes at my university, I took a learning styles quiz to better help me prepare to be successful. I am a mix of hands-on, auditory and visual learner. I learn best getting my hands involved, listening and seeing charts and colors. I incorporated those things into my test preparation habits. One thing that has truly helped me is faithfully using a planner. With a planner, I am able to know when I have upcoming tests and figure out a study plan based on how many days I have until a test. I recently did some valuable research prior to changing my test preparation practices and found that our brain will retain information the first 15 minutes and the last 15 minutes of learning new information. So instead of studying for two hours, I decreased the time to 30 minutes and have noticed a significant difference in my ability to recall information and learn information. I’ve found reviewing my notes helps but not as much as creating an outline. I turn all my handwritten notes into outlines, which still includes all the important information I need but in a simplified version. The reason being is because our brains learn better when things are simple and straight to the point, instead of having a detailed explanation. I have also found that doing mini quizzes before and during preparation for an upcoming a test is a way to find out what you need to focus on more, and what you need to focus less. Using this technique allows me to utilize as much studying time as possible, especially because I am enrolled in an accelerated program so our tests are typically over more than five chapters at a time.

DaJee from Tennessee
College Freshman
West Coast University