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

I stumbled into my exam room, where at least a hundred students were taking the test that day. At precisely 7 o'clock, the proctor gave us released us to our packet of questions. Five problems. One hundred points.

Although the problems were unique and never like anything I'd encountered, they were similar, and I had mastered the tools to solve them. The challenge made the exam fun, leaving my neck straining from hovering over my paper with intense focus. I know, I know. The words "exam" and "fun" don't go together. But, when you know what you're doing, it's exciting to see familiar problems and be able to solve them. Here are a few ways to prepare and have fun during an exam:

Method one: solve problems. This is a method of active learning, and it is one that is much more effective than rewriting notes. It's giving you exposure to problems that you may see on an exam or even in real life. By practicing over and over, you are more comfortable with that type of problem and guarantees that you understand the topic.

Method two: flashcards. Repetition shapes confidence, and flashcards can be a great way of studying subjects like Spanish, psychology, anatomy, etc. I like to make sure my definitions are short and sweet (sometimes with a picture) because if it's too long, I won't process information well.

Method three: examine past exams and reviews. Past exams are a great indicator of what might show up in the future. If the teacher posts reviews, it is vital to use them as a part of your studying process. It can narrow down potential topics and give you a sense of the style of a test before even taking it. The ACT/SAT is an excellent example of this: these standardized exams have a unique "style," but by practicing using past exams, you pick up on patterns and specific skills.

Lastly, it's essential to spread out studying. Cramming isn't sufficient, and it can hurt your chances of recovering information.

Using these tricks have worked for me, and I hope it helps you

Yujin from Iowa
High School Senior
Ames High School