How to Prepare for Taking a Test
Test preparation doesn't start the night before the test -- at least it shouldn't! There is more to getting ready to take a test than cramming. The better you know the material, the easier it will be to prepare for the test. It's important to do all of the homework that is assigned in class because this will help you remember the material.
When the test is about a week away, start going over the material and ask the teacher any questions that you have about it. Ask what will be covered on the test and what sort of test it will be (multiple choice, essay, etc.). This will help you to know how to prepare.
Don't try to study everything at once. Your brain retains the information better if you study it in chunks. Divide the material that you need to review into sections, with one section for each day that you have to study. You should take a 15- to 20-minute break after every hour of studying. This will help you retain more information. People tend to remember the first and last things they study the best, so taking frequent breaks actually increasing the amount of information that you will remember.
Make sure you don't miss class right before the test. You will miss any review that the teacher does in class. Attending the review session will give you a better idea of what is going to be on the test. The teacher will usually try to go over most of the material that will be covered on the test.
If there is a practice test, review it after it is returned to you to make sure you understand the answers to the questions you have missed. Talk to your teacher if there is anything you are unsure about. You can use the practice test to help you study. You can also use your notes from class and any homework assignments you have completed that have been returned. Of course, you should study the textbook as well.
Prepare a study sheet that contains the key concepts, formulas and terminology that you will need to know for the test. Pull this sheet out and review it frequently.
You should always get a good night's sleep the night before a test. If you stay up half the night studying, you are going to be too tired to think clearly when you take the test.
Eat a good breakfast the day of the test. Try to eat a meal that is high in protein to help give you more energy and help you focus. Avoid high-carbohydrate foods such as cereal and opt for eggs and bacon instead.
Use the restroom before you show up to take the test. It will be harder to remember the material you have studied if you are uncomfortable while taking the test.
Make sure you have everything with you that you will need for the test. This includes pencils, calculators and scrap paper.
Try to get to class early on the day of the test. This will allow you a few minutes to relax before it's time to start. Pull out your study sheet and go over it once or twice before the test starts. Then take some deep breaths to help reduce your stress levels.
Read the instructions before you take the test, even if you think you don't need to. This will give your brain a minute to start focusing on the test. Make sure you put your name on the test before you start working. There is nothing worse than losing credit for a test because you forgot to put your name on it.
Avoid test anxiety. Now that the day of the test has arrived, there is nothing more that you can do to prepare. Accept the fact that you are as prepared as you are ever going to be, and don't worry about it. If you find yourself getting anxious, take a few deep breaths to help yourself relax.
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