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

For me preparing for an exam starts in a class by actively listening and taking notes as well as preparing for class. If my professor uses slides and posts them before class, I like to go through them before class, so I have an idea for what we are going to learn. I also always finish assigned readings and homework. During class, I make sure I am listening and taking notes on key topics the teacher is discussing. If during a lecture I am confused I like to go to office hours or additional tutoring offered if I can’t get my question answered in class. When the test is approaching and most of the information that will be tested, I have been taught I like to make a concept map to organize my thoughts. The map also helps me distinguish what I need more help with. I start by taking a blank sheet of paper and going through all of my notes, writing down different keywords, definitions, and concepts. After that, I try to make connections between all of the things I have written down. The next thing I do with the concept map is also another way of preparing for the exam, I take the different concepts and find different practice problems for each. After doing the problems I can see which topics I need to practice more and maybe get help on. In class I like to create study groups so if I have questions and the professor is not available, I have other students to ask and before the exam, I like to get with my study group and make different questions to test each other and then explain concepts. For finals, I follow my normal study process but also go through all old exams and quizzes and explain to myself what I got wrong. I have developed a lot of my study skills by asking older students how they do best and finding what works best for me. I would recommend other students actively engage in class and make a relationship with their professors so it is less intimidating to ask questions. Test preparation is a very important skill that every student should develop.

Elle from Missouri
College Sophomore
University of Arizona