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

The dreaded day is coming. The day that causes anxiety and panic for weeks, slowly growing and building inside of me until I feel like bursting with dread. I feared the inevitable days that I was sat at a desk, heart pounding, palms sweating, desperately trying to grasp at course content I swore I remembered. Before I found a study method that worked for me, I was wrecked with test anxiety and the feeling like I could never be prepared enough. But, I am proud to report that as an avid AP student, I have finally found a studying strategy that works for me and many of my like-minded peers.
Something about me-- I am an extremely type-A individual, so many studying tips that worked for my type-B friends did not mesh with me, at all. I found creating songs to remember content or drawing pictures that relate to concepts did not work for me. Not only did I have no natural composing or drawing talent, but I felt as if I was wasting so much time on study strategies that did not match my learning style. I would spend hours creating songs or drawings to attempt to study, but found myself unable to recall any information contained within those mediums on the actual test day. Those methods worked wonders for my type-B peers, but I felt stuck.
It took a lot of experimenting with different study strategies to find something that worked for me and my fellow type-A peers, but after many years of trial and error, I finally have a solid preparation strategy.
For a big test, such as an AP test or an end-of-year final, I start studying about a month in advance. I start studying the content that I had the most trouble with or remember the least, studying for an hour per day until I feel solid in the area. Then I rinse and repeat with more familiar, but still uncertain topics. I will reread old notes or the textbook and take new, stream-lined notes. And perhaps the most important factor- practice tests! The more I practice the test, the less anxious I feel when the actual day arrives.

Crystal from Nevada
High School Senior
Spanish Springs High School