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

I believe that test preparation is not one size fits all and that different strategies will work for different people. I am better at learning by practicing problems rather than listening to or watching someone else do it. Personally when preparing for a big exam I start about a week in advance. I will read the notes and relevant lectures that will be covered on the exam and then I will figure out what I do not understand fully. I write down the topics I need to review most and watch videos from online to help get another perspective on the topic. Once this is done I do any review material that is given out. The main study guide, if there is one, is a huge help and allows me to understand more of where I am at in the process of understanding the material. Once I do the study guide or review material I will go through past homework assignments which gives me more practice and usually the homework goes more in depth on the topic and goes into the specifics of the topic. I do the study guide and homework review about 3 days in advance of the exam while I watch videos and go through notes about 5-6 days in advance. In the couple days leading up to the exam I will do any past exams that are given if there are any or I will go through problems from quizzes or labs. Going over the same topic repetitively helps retain the knowledge I need to succeed on the exam. On the day of the exam I do not like to cram myself or study a ridiculous amount because by the time I get to the exam I may be tired or less engaged in the exam. Typically, I will go through my notes again and maybe do a couple practice problems but the goal is to be ready for the exam the day before to make the day of the exam less stressful. I have never believed in cramming like some students do and I really try to be well prepared in advance. I think a few things to remember are to start studying early, reinforce the topic multiple times, and do not try to cram last minute.

Brant from Illinois
College Freshman
Purdue University