Happy is the student who gets a take-home test or who is asked to complete a project for the final assignment. Alas, many students still have to face those multiple-choice or essay questions. Having to review an entire semester’s work only adds to the stress.
What to do?
- First, use the study guide that most teachers provide to structure your notes, and make sure you have every answer filled in.
- Break your study time into small units of 35 to 45 minutes per session over several days–avoid multi-hour cramming. It usually does not work.
- As you begin the test, take a few deep breaths and remind yourself that you have studied–and you are ready. A few tips can help you stay focused and guide you to the correct answers
- Jot down key terms and formulas that you think you will need but fear you will forget.
- KEY!! Read the instructions carefully, and underline key words. Make sure you really understand what the directions are asking for. Don’t rush.
- Quickly look at the test and answer the shortest and/or easiest questions first.
- Do NOT skim questions–read them carefully and ALWAYS read to the end of each question.
- On multiple-choice tests, remember that if one word in the answer is wrong, the answer is wrong. Cross it off.
- Budget your time and do not spend too long on any questions. A good rule of thumb is that if you have to read a question more than twice, skip it and move on. Timing is critical in many tests.
- DO NOT SECOND GUESS yourself–stay with your original answer. Only change it if you are absolutely sure you made a mistake. Otherwise, you are likely to change a correct answer–not good!
- Fill in all your answers (unless there is a penalty for incorrect answers), even if you have to guess. You never know–your brain can work in mysterious ways!