How To Study For a Test or Final Exam

One may ask, how do I best study for that big exam? It all comes down to good study habits. Blast Study facilitates strong study habits for better retention that translates into better grades.

A great deal of effectively studying comes down to what you do throughout the entire course, according to St. Lawrence University:

“1. Keep up with your work. If you attend class regularly, keep up with readings, and take notes conscientiously, studying can be a relatively pain-free process. Make sure to review and expand upon class notes regularly throughout the semester. Consider developing a glossary or collection of note cards for vocabulary review in each class. Many students find that preparing for an individual class for 60-90 minutes per day, five or six days per week, will leave them well-prepared at exam time. To assist students with organization at finals time, we have compiled a couple of time management tools that are included with this page.”

“2. Don’t cram at the last second. Building off our previous entry, try studying for 60-90 minutes per day for a week leading up to an exam. All-nighters simply don’t work for most people, and students experience declining returns on their efforts when they attempt to study for four and five hours straight.”

St. Lawrence University goes on to list several more tips for nailing that big exam. Click here to view entire article.

According to the Florida Career College, it is never too late to learn better study skills and test preparation. As borrowed from the Wall Street Journal, five study tips truly impact test performance.

“Practice Tests. I’m not talking about a study guide or an instructor-created practice test (although that would certainly qualify). I’m talking about testing yourself on the material over and over. According to the article, “testing yourself repeatedly before an exam teaches the brain to retrieve and apply knowledge from memory.” This is different than just reading a textbook or reading your notes. The goal is to ask yourself questions and require your brain to come up with the answers. You can use note cards to test yourself or find a study buddy who is willing to ask you questions.”

“Sleep. You’ve probably heard that you should get a good night’s sleep before a test. While this is true, according to the article, sleep is important in other ways as well:

  • First, make it a point to study the most important things right before you go to bed. Why? Well according to Dan Taylor of the University of North Texas in Denton, you’ll be able to remember those things better.
  • Another thing is that you shouldn’t wake up earlier than you normally do to try to cram in more study time. Why? “[Waking up earlier] could interfere with the rapid-eye-movement sleep that aids memory.”
  • Finally, the all-nighter? Don’t do it. Studying all night without sleeping has been linked to lower test grades in educational studies.”

Florida Career College goes on to mention how food makes a difference the night before, why to get rid of distractions, and how anxiety truly hurts performance. Click here to view entire article.

Test anxiety can deprive students of achieving their best test performance. According to the NCSU Student Counseling Center, you should assess your learning style, analyze your study environment, and assess your current study habits.

“The Value of Note-taking
Thorough lecture notes are key to successful academic performance. Not only can you review them as you prepare for upcoming tests and exams, but you can also refer to them later when you take advanced courses. Note-taking helps you listen attentively and think critically about the material that your professor presents. In addition, just the act of writing helps to commit information to your long-term memory.

Although professors share information not available in textbooks, they also make connections between concepts you’ve read about in your textbook. If you write notes in class, you will listen attentively and think critically. In addition, you’ll remember more if you write things down. Studies show that if you don’t take notes, you may forget half a lecture after 24 hours, eighty percent after two weeks, and ninety-five percent after one month. Keeping lecture notes provides you with a storehouse of information you can draw upon when you take more advanced courses. Sharpening your note-taking skills now will help you prepare for when a future employer requires you to take notes in a meeting or at a conference.

Prepare for Success
Before you go to class, complete assigned reading, research or other homework. Review previous class notes and prepare to ask clarifying questions. Remember to take the right materials, such as a notebook, pad, pencil, pen or highlighter with you to class. Sit front and center so that you can see and hear the professor and your classmates.

Focus During Class
Participate actively in class activities. Think about how class-work relates to your personal goals. Reflect critically on what you hear. However, if you disagree with a statement, allow the instructor to finish before you ask a question or make an argument.”

There are several note-taking strategies, reading strategies, and test-taking strategies that can truly make a difference. Click here to view entire article.






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