Test Taking – Preparing Completely

June 1, 2010 at 8:59 am Leave a comment

Test Taking Advice for Students

In the words of the great John Wooden, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” One of the keys to doing well on tests is to prepare fully. Start your preparation well in advance of the test, do not wait until the night before to cram.  You should know the format of the exam, the topics that will be covered, and approximately how many questions to expect.

What to Review

Review your old homework assignments, notes, and note cards. Spend more time on problems you struggled with in the past.

Work through the chapter test and the chapter review in the textbook. I recommend working the chapter test first – it will let you know which problem types will require further study. You can find several problems of that type in the chapter review.

Practice Test

Make a practice test for yourself. Take it under test conditions – do not use your notes or textbook, and time yourself. Allow yourself the same amount of time that you will be allowed for the actual test. This will really help you determine which problems you have under control and which problems require further study. Also, you will know whether you are working fast enough to complete the exam.

Final Preparation

Get a good night’s sleep on the night before the exam. If you are tired you cannot think as clearly. Also, be sure to eat properly before your test. It is easy for hungry students to become distracted during a test.

If you have any questions about preparing for a test, or if you have any strategies as an instructor that you would like to share, I’d like to encourage you to share by leaving a comment, or reaching me through the contact page at my web site – georgewoodbury.com.


I am a math instructor at College of the Sequoias in Visalia, CA. Each Tuesday I post an article related to Math Study Skills on my blog. If there’s a particular study skill you’d like me to address, or if you have a question or a comment, please let me know. You can reach me through the contact page on my website – http://georgewoodbury.com.


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