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

There are many methods of studying that I find very useful depending on the information I am trying to retain. Firstly, when I am trying to memorize things like vocabulary or lists od characteristics, I prefer the method of Loci. In this method you use a walk through to label the items you wish to remember using a familiar place. For example, lets say I am studying for a sociology exam and need to remember which places have extraordinary universal healthcare. I might use my school as my template because it is a familiar place. So, as I walk up the walkway I would reach the first door, this door I might mentally name Thailand. So as I step into the school I am stepping into Thailand, but at the second doorway I would travel to England. So, upon entering my school I first travel through Thailand to England then into the lobby which I might mentally call Japan. In this way I am remembering important information by making it familiar and relevant to me. This same process can be used successfully while shopping. Loci is Latin for "places" and for this reason is often referred to as the memory palace. Ancient Greeks and Romans used this method for recalling in the memory contests of their times and it is still every bit as effective today if practiced correctly. You can also construct your own memory palace. As explained on theartofmemory.com all you need is an imagination. Your personal memory palace could be a house or a town, constructed mentally by you, with beloved stopping points of interest spread throughout. So, if you are going to the grocery store ad need to remember a list like dog food, napkins, cheese, milk, and eggs, for example, you could mentally picture your own home where the front entry way has a giant hungry dog slobbering on the floors, the living room might have napkins spread across the surface of all the furniture, in the kitchen you could imagine a cow and a chicken drinking coffee, while thunderously rolling down the hallway is a cheese truckle.

Jennifer from Tennessee
College Freshman
Columbia State Community College