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“Taking Tests” Session 5 STUDY SKILLS

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1 “Taking Tests” Session 5 STUDY SKILLS
“Study is nothing else but a possession of the mind.” ~Thomas Hobbes “I will study and get ready, and perhaps my chance will come.”  ~Abraham Lincoln

2 Day of Exam Prior to Exam During the Exam After the Exam
*Test-taking strategies will only enhance your ability to demonstrate your knowledge. The best way to improve your test grades is with good time management and study habits. * Day of Exam Eat a protein rich meal. Use the bathroom immediately before the exam. Give yourself enough time to get there without being rushed. Look over notes, but don’t try to reread the book. Avoid people in panic mode or those who don’t seem to care. _____________________________ Prior to Exam Review frequently. Keep up with readings. Use memory techniques. Use as many senses as you can to be an active learner. Make outlines or other visual aids. _____________________________ During the Exam Use a watch. Make sure you have all materials (like scantrons). Reduce distractions. Avoid panicking because others aren’t at the same place you are. ____________________________ After the Exam Be in class. Look over the test, and figure out where you went wrong. Go over the test with the professor. Make a plan for what to do differently. _____________________________

3 Taking Tests in Online Courses
All of the strategies previously mentioned work for online courses as well; however, there are a few things to keep in mind that are especially vital to taking tests in an online course. During the Exam Watch the time! Steer clear of social networking sites or any other open applications that might distract you from the exam. Before/Day of Exam Study! Even if you have permission to use the book/notes, you will likely not have enough time during the exam to do so. Double-check the online syllabus for the time when your exam will be posted/opened. Decide where you will take your test. Ensure that you have a back-up plan to follow should your primary computer malfunction. After the Exam Confirm your submission, and write down any confirmation information you receive. Print a copy of your exam. Check Blackboard/E-college for grades posted. Review your exam (if you have access to it) for areas in which you had difficulty. your professor for clarification.

4 Using Flash Cards as a Memory Aid
Prepare the cards well in advance. Review frequently for short amounts of time. Break the cards into small groups at first, and learn one group at a time. Sort cards by topics or relationships to help keep the course organization in mind. Make the cards into questions that might be on the exam. Shuffle the cards frequently to make sure you aren’t just learning them in order.

5 Strategies Multiple Choice Exam Short Answer Exam Essay Exam Multiple Choice Exam Short Answer Exam Essay Exam Read instructions carefully. Read the stem first. See if you can recall the answer before looking at options. Read ALL options. Focus on details. Make a choice. You can come back if you’re not sure. Eliminate the answers you know are wrong. Remember—later questions can help with details for earlier questions. Attend to grammar. Notice extreme qualifiers. Avoid spending too much time on one question. Answer every question. Go with your gut. Why are you changing your answer? Pay attention when you see only one or two questions with an “all of the above” answer choice. Ensure that before the exam you have. . . used flash cards to study. anticipated questions that might be asked. Read the question carefully, and make sure you answer everything asked. Answer the easy questions first. Make an outline. Answer every question—never leave a question blank. If you don’t know the answer to the question, then make it into a question you can answer. Read instructions carefully. Think. What is the question asking you? Make an outline, aiming to use one idea per paragraph. Write down everything you’re asked for and more; include details when you can. Check that you’ve given an appropriate answer to the question: Are the facts and/or opinions appropriate? (Use approximations if you’re not sure of exact dates.) Budget your time. Proofread if there is time. Draw a line through any mistakes: It is neater and faster than erasing.

6 Additional Testing Tips
Know the differences among these common essay-exam verbs/directives: analyze, assess, compare/contrast, criticize, define, discuss, explain, identify, illustrate, justify, list, outline, relate, and review. Math Exams Choose a problem or question that seems easiest to you, and do it first. Stay in motion. Show your work. Think partial credit. Keep your work legible. Ask the instructor if you don’t understand. Avoid panicking. Check your solutions if you have time at the end. Hand in your paper when time is called. Extreme Qualifiers Positive Always Every All Best Only Moderate Seldom Sometimes Usually Many Most Negative Never At no time Worst None Is not

7 When you have no idea, the best guess is. . .*
Matching Exams Find out if each item is used only one or if some are used more than once. Check off the answers you have used already. Analyze the choices to see if any parts of the term or word you know will then allow you to associate it with the right answer. True/False Exams If there is more than one fact in the statement, check corrections of each part. If one part is false, the item is wrong unless there is a qualifying word such as “usually” or “sometimes.” Words such as “always” and “never” tend to indicate that the statement is false, especially if you can think of an exception. “Always” and “never” are absolutes; true absolutes are rare. When the statement is given negatively, state the item without the “no” or “not” and see if it is true or false. If now the statement reads “true,” mark it false. When you have no idea, the best guess is. . .* the most general alternative. the longest. the middle value. probably not one of a pair of similar statements. probably one of a pair of opposites. the one that agrees grammatically. *This gives you a place to start—not necessarily the answer.

8 Works Cited
“Teaching a Study Skills System that Works” Landmark College

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