Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.
I strongly believe that motivation plays a crucial role in any test preparation practice. As such, an individual should find a way to find this inner drive whether it be external (getting into a dream college) or internal (rewarding yourself food). After this first step has been established, realistic expectations should be set. It would not be wise to cram all a year's worth of math in a single night. Your recollection of information is improved if you study over a longer period of time, a claim that psychology has strongly proven. It also would not be very practical because you would end up sleep deprived and would expectedly perform worse on the exam. Finally, you do not have enough time to thoroughly go through the topics covered on the test, especially if it is cumulative. As such, one of your goals for this method of studying is to provide yourself ample time to study before a test. Give yourself a week to study for a unit test and 1-2 months for a cumulative test. In addition, for each study session give yourself a half an hour to study or more depending on the complexity of the material.
Before taking a diagnostic test look over the material first. Looking it over will improve your diagnostic test performance and will reinforce your study practices. In addition, reviewing would provide a refresher for information that was learned but partially forgotten. One important study practice is to create a mnemonic device when trying to remember groups of information. Make the mnemonic meaningful and not just a collection of random letters. To remember formulas, I find that writing it down multiple times helps me remember, the same goes for definitions and quotes.
I personally try my best to stick with these study practices because they work for me. This being said, this study preparation might not be suited for everyone. We all have our preferences when it comes to learning and these study methods should be taken a guide and altered to fit your personal needs.
Paola from Georgia
High School Senior
Lakeside High School