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

Firstly, before you attempt to memorize terms the night before, understand that the average human brain can hold only seven items in their short-term memory. I continue to make the mistake of waiting till the last minute to study for an exam and encounter the hopeless endeavor to memorize 30 terms and definitions at once. While reviewing flashcards may lead you to believe you have learned the topic at hand, take practice tests to ensure that you have fully grasped the topic. When I feel stuck on a topic, I find that rewriting what I am confused on using the brightest and/or largest writing utensil I have on a separate piece of paper helps immensely. In the process of studying for chemistry exams last semester, I used every color in my box of markers and wrote equations abnormally large on a single piece of paper. I have an extremely short attention span, so seeing vocabulary and concepts in a new way helps me to engage with what I am learning. If you do not want to waste paper, try using a whiteboard and multi-colored washable markers and have at it! Speaking or reading what you are learning aloud, especially in an unusual voice, can help you memorize what you are learning more efficiently. I found this method to be true when I used my best Porky Pig voice to memorize the Periodic Table of Elements. Explain what you are learning to somebody or something around you, even if you end up teaching your stuffed pig the four stages of mitosis. Everyone has their own learning style, so try out different test prep methods and see which works best for you!

Meliz from California
College Sophomore
Diablo Valley College