There are two phases to tests: the preparation for the test and the writing of the test.
Preparing for a Test:
- Keep up with regular class work and assignments. Have a complete set of notes before you sit down to study.
- Record the test in your planner or on your calendar in your smart phone. Now, go to a date a week in advance of the test date. Write “Begin studying for test”. If you’ve used your smart phone, set an alarm to remind you. Use a time of day that you are standing at your locker, so that you will be prompted to take the appropriate books home.
- Start reviewing your notes a few days before the test is scheduled to happen.
- Make lists, rhymes or pictures to organize and remember information. Mind maps are a great tool.
- Use a “buddy system” to study. Teach the information in your own words to a classmate. Take turns doing this so that sometimes you are the student for your buddy.
- Get a good night’s sleep. If you have been reviewing all along, and have made study notes, you shouldn’t need to pull an “all-nighter”.
- Eat a good breakfast, and if it’s an afternoon test, a good lunch, too. Your brain can more easily retrieve information if it isn’t distracted by being hungry. Drink water, not sugary or caffeine-based drinks.
Taking a Test:
- If possible, sit in a place where you will be least distracted.
- Bring extra pencils, pens and erasers. Check that your calculator is functioning beforehand. Bring water and tissues for your nose (if necessary!). Go to the bathroom!
- Read and follow the directions very carefully. Underline or highlight the key words. Be sure that you answer all parts of a question. If you don’t understand something, ask.
- Scan the test to see the types of questions. Pace yourself. Pay attention to the marking scheme, and be sure to allow yourself lots of time for the big score items.
- If you don’t know an answer, skip the question, and return to it later.
- When you finish, use any extra time to review your work. Change your answers only if you are certain of the new answer.
- Put your name on every page.
- Hand in all of your work.