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

There is nothing worse than uncertainty. Walking into the classroom unprepared can cause significant amounts of stress and anxiety. Over my educational career, I have found that test preparation is all about timing. This may seem like an obvious answer, and it is. However, there is much more to timing than many think. Every student is different, some students may be able to study for an hour or two with no break. However, I am not one of them. About a year ago, I watched a TED talk where the speaker touched on work and how he has become so successful. He spoke of splitting work into small 15 to 30-minute sections with a break or reward at the end. Being honest with yourself about how long you can focus is an extremely important part of test preparation. If after 20 min you lose focus, start to break your preparation into 20-minute sections. By allowing a break in between studying to play a game or listen to music, you allow yourself time to reset and regenerate focus. Ever since I started using this method, I immediately noticed a change in the understanding I had for the content. I began to feel more confident when arriving for an exam. Instead of rushing through the material, I began to focus on what I needed to learn. Knowing I could take a break at the end of the section helped me maintain focus. Many people talk about how technology may distract or side track studying, and it will. By inserting structured breaks into studying, the temptation to randomly interrupt preparation with technology goes down since you know a break is around the corner. This allows the individual to stay focused on the material until it is time for a break. This method has really changed how I approach test preparation and work in general. It is important to not overload yourself. When done correctly, this method will leave you feeling more prepared and confident before an exam.

Connor from Colorado
College Freshman
University of Michigan Ann Arbor