Studying for Tests

Tests are a way for you and your teacher to measure how well you have learned the material covered by the class. Think of them as a challenge! Here are some tips for studying for tests.

Before the test

  1. Be sure to find out the following details ahead of time.

    • what material the test will cover
    • what type of test it will be (multiple choice, true false, short answer, essay)
    • how the test will be graded
    • how much the test will count toward the final grade

  2. Study in a place that is free of distractions. Have ready all the things you will need, such as paper, pens, or a calculator.

  3. Study at a time when you are alert and not hungry or sleepy.

  4. Don't wait until the last minute to study! Short daily study sessions are better than one long session the night before the test.

  5. Set a goal for each study period. If you are being tested on three chapters, set up four study sessions, one for each chapter and one for a review of the main ideas in all three chapters.

  6. Repetition is key! Read and reread your class notes and the relevant chapters in the textbook.

  7. While you are reviewing your notes, cover them up periodically and summarize them out loud. Pretend that you are explaining the material to someone else.

  8. Create your own study aids.

    • Make an outline from your notes of just the main ideas.
    • Make a timeline of important dates or the order of events.
    • Make flashcards for studying vocabulary or events and important dates.
    • Make up your own quiz or test based on your notes and have a friend, parent or sibling test you.

  9. Do any practice exams or study sheets provided by the teacher. These will help you focus your study session and give you confidence.

  10. Get help from the teacher if you do not understand something.

During the test

  1. Read the instructions carefully. Ask the teacher if you are unsure about anything.

  2. Read the entire test through before starting. This will help you pace yourself.

  3. Answer the easiest questions first.

  4. Leave the most time for questions that have the highest point value or require a lot of writing.

  5. Do only what you are required to do. Don't waste time doing things that you will not receive credit for, such as copying test questions onto your paper.

  6. Write clearly.

  7. Leave time to check over your answers.

After the test

  1. When the test is returned, read the teacher's comments carefully and try to learn from your mistakes.

  2. Save tests for later review for end-of-term tests.

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