College exams are the bane of every high school student’s existence. Exam results often affect a student’s chances of getting accepted in a good college, even if many colleges have now opted to disregard results from standardized exams. While these tests don’t determine your intelligence, the scores could still affect your chances of getting accepted into your first choice.
Make an Outline and Organize Your Notes
List down your subjects and specific topics covered. This list can serve as your guide while reviewing. This will also help you organize your thoughts while you’re fleeting from one topic to another. Get separate folders and envelopes for all the subjects in the list so that you can organize your notes and previous test papers. Cardboard boxes are better if you want to include your textbooks for each subject.
Study the easy subjects first before tackling the difficult ones. The principle behind this strategy is that you gain momentum by reviewing the subjects you enjoy and that momentum will get you through the tedious hours of reviewing the difficult ones. By getting the easy subjects out of the way early in your review, you can spend more time studying the more difficult ones. But don’t forget to go back to the easy subjects again before you decide to end your review.
Prep Classes and Mock Tests
Usually offered by universities and colleges, these exams do more than just prepare a student for the stress of the real examination with a time limit. They also hone a student’s mental reflexes, like when the student can come up with the answer in a snap when a familiar subject matter comes up. The mock exams help the students develop their own pace when answering the easy parts of the exam and allot the remainder of the time to the difficult parts. Many SAT preparation programs are designed to mimic the real exam, in terms of the format and the content.
Some students don’t go for these classes and stick to their tried-and-true ways of doing mock exams, with a friend or a family member acting as a time keeper. Many SAT review booklets have mock exams that a student can answer on his own. There are also some sites online that offer mock exams for download. A prep class may also be offered in your school. Ask your guidance counselor about your options.
Whichever option you choose, the point is to simulate the exam as closely as possible several times during your review. Answering mock exam questions with your head on a fluffy pillow and a hot chocolate drink by your side is different from having the mock exam inside a room full of nervous students all hoping to get a high score, or at least answer all the questions within the given timeframe.
Students that commit to their exam preparations are usually the ones that get the highest scores. On the day of the exam, very few students would say that they’re 100% prepared. Most students, however, have high hopes of getting high scores because they know they’re ready for anything.
Photo Courtesy of BIGSTOCK