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

As someone who got through K-12 without having to study, college forced me to create a study routine and learn what methods work best for me. Memorization is NOT studying. I've developed a method that works to help me AND my friends and peers to prepare for exams.

Step one: Limit what you study. There shouldn't be a rush to cram, and if you don't know what you're studying, then you need to find out first and foremost.
-In this step, I create an outline of content to study. I find out the pages that contain the content I need to focus on, and isolate the notes containing that.

Step two: Understand your familiarity with the content. If I don't know it well at all, I study with friends who know more than I do on the topic. If I know it fairly well, I study alone to quiz myself. If I know it extremely well, I teach the content to my friends that struggle.
-In this step, I create my study tools. Flashcards for personal quizzing, notes and worksheets for practice, and a teaching guideline for helping others.

Step three: Find somewhere you feel comfortable. Personally, libraries are too silent and my bedroom is too relaxing. Lately, I find myself in an outdoors area where people keep to themselves. It's not too private or too silent, and it's peaceful. I can study solo or alone, and there's no need to reserve a study room or keep a large study group quiet.
-In this step, working in a group may require a change in location to best support everyone and their study techniques.

Step four: Start studying! There's no need to rush, but don't dwell on the same things over and over. There has been instances where I study everything so excessively, I mix up my information and end up remembering facts incorrectly.
-In this step, I sometimes set time limits, and other times I just grind until I'm comfortable with the content. Personally, if I'm studying before a test I limit my time to an hour and a half so I don't stress myself out.

Amy from Texas
College Freshman
The University of Texas at San Antonio