If you are taking summer school, you are most likely approaching your final exams. If you are not taking a summer class, tests probably loom in your more distant future, making them a little less threatening. However, if you are a student, you know that tests are not something to be looked forward to because of all of the pressure to do well. Ugh, talk about a summer buzz-kill.
If you are like me, preparing for a test is a very stressful occasion. You have to spend hours reviewing the materials, reteaching yourself everything you’ve forgotten, and then there comes the time when you walk into the classroom and actually take the test. By the end of those class periods, all I want to do is go home and bury myself beneath my blankets.
Luckily, your next test-taking experience can be less traumatic if you follow these tips and tricks:
Arrive on time. There’s nothing worse than showing up late for a test and having to walk to your seat while everyone else is already scribbling down answers. This situation is sure to get your nerves jumpy and will make it more difficult for you to settle down and concentrate. If you can, try to get there a little bit early so you can become comfortable with the setting and review for the test.
Preview the test. When the instructor says you can start, take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with the test. You should flip through the test, noting what kind of questions are being asked and how many there are of each kind (ie. 30 multiple choice, 10 fill-in-the-blank, and two essays). If there are any questions that you know off the top of your head, go ahead and answer those. If there are equations or formulas that you will need on specific sections, feel free to write those in. This will help you feel more comfortable with the test and keep your brain from forgetting things as you take the test.
Leave the hardest questions for last. If there is a question that you are completely unsure about, skip it and come back to it later. This will keep you from exhausting your brain and spending too much time on one question. Instead, just put a mark next to it so you know to come back to it later. Then, if you still don’t know the answer when you return to the question, just make the best guess you can. If you don’t guess, you are sure to miss it, but if you do guess, you have a chance at getting the question right.
Work at your own pace. Just because Speedy Sally is sitting next to you does not mean you have to answer the questions as quickly as she does. Rushing yourself will not give you as much time to think the question through thoroughly. Instead, work at a pace that is comfortable for you while also keeping an eye on the clock so you do not run out of time.
Write legibly and clearly. If you are taking an essay or free response test, then try to use your neatest handwriting possible. You would hate to lose points because the teacher can’t read your handwriting.
Review your answers. If you have time at the end of the test, go back and review your answers. This could help you catch any silly mistakes you might have made, saving you points on your final score.
Do you have any test-taking tips or tricks? Please feel free to share them with us in the comment section below.
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