Taking a test can be very stressful. The good news, though, is that you can cope with the anxiety with just a little preparation. The more you prepare and review for your test, the more confident you will feel. Cramming will only make you feel worse — and you’ll forget the information and possibly do worse than if you hadn’t studied at all!
Here are some tips on how to prepare for an exam. It will help you feel calmer and more in control when you actually sit down and answer the questions. It will also help you break the bad habits that may be affecting your ability to study well.
Find your motivation
One of the most difficult things to do in any endeavor is taking that first step. And this includes tests. The first step you should take is to start reviewing for it, but for many people, finding the impetus crack those books open can be a difficult obstacle to overcome. What you need is to motivate yourself to start reviewing for the test. One way to motivate you is a change in environment. Go to a place that is conducive to reviewing. This should be a place with minimal distractions and preferably quiet. Tell yourself why you’re preparing for the exam and what will be the effects of getting good grades.
Prepare your mind
Reviewing for your test won’t be effective if your mind is not willing or unable to absorb the information it needs. Try to ease into the review by calming yourself down to open up your mind for the information it is about to absorb. Relaxation and meditation techniques before you begin your review will help your mind absorb information better and also make it retain the information more effectively. Make this a habit before you start reviewing.
Take down notes
Reviewing for exams is not just about re-reading books, handouts and your notes. You also need to take down notes. This is a very effective memorization technique. Employing your muscles while reviewing will employ certain areas in your brain that will help you in recalling information during the day of the test. Use bullet points to list down the important information or data that you come across or you think will be asked in the test. You can use these notes as an added reviewer when you’re on your downtime because the information has already been distilled. You can also look for a study style that suits your learning style and natural intelligence or practice mind mapping.
You can devise a mock up test for yourself to help you further. Try to find out what kind of exam you’ll be taking and devise a test similar to it.
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