The semester is winding down and you are almost finished! The only thing standing in your way of an academic break is…Finals. These tests signify two things: 1) the end of another semester, which puts you one step closer to graduation, and 2) the culmination of everything learned in your classes compiled into one test. While test-taking may be daunting for some students, it certainly does not have to be for you.
When you are studying for your finals, remember you are not only doing this for you, but you are doing it for the generations behind you. We have compiled 12 Test-Taking Tips to prepare you for your upcoming finals:
- Be prepared and read directions carefully. Don’t bypass information that provides important details to remember while taking the exam.
- Pay close attention to the announcements by the test proctor.
- Insure you have enough pens, pencils, paper, a calculator (if approved), pencil sharpener, etc.
- Jot down any dates, formulas or keywords on scratch paper at the start of the test to clear your mind.
- Skim the entire test to familiarize yourself with the exam.
- Pace yourself, check time limits. Don’t spend too much time on one question. If you need to, you can always return to the question later.
- Concentrate on your test, not how fast others are working or completing the exam. What matters is how well you do on the test, so stay focused on your work.
- Focus on each question; do not let your mind wander.
- Skip questions you do not know, but go back to them in the end.
- Keep in mind, you can do well without making 100 percent on any examination. A perfect score is not always achievable, and that is okay. Don’t become discouraged. If you felt unprepared before the exam, find ways to ensure you are ready next time.
- Review your work; double-check your answers. Make sure you answered all of the questions and did not leave any unanswered.
- Follow your gut and stay positive. Once you finish your exam and turn it in, there is no need to dwell on it or ask “what if.” Focus on something fun or begin to mentally prepare yourself for the next exam.
In addition, making sure you get plenty of sleep and eating a balanced meal prior to your test can help in your ability to perform well on your exam. In “4 Test-Taking Tips to Get You Through Finals Week,” author Kathryn Knight Randolph explained, “Getting at least eight hours of sleep is more vital to your test-taking than studying until 2 a.m. Instead, make a schedule for studying far in advance and keep to it so you can avoid the late-night cram session.”
Study Skills Apps:
Would you like that extra bit of help with studying? These study skills apps are great tools to use while in college.
- Study Blue helps create study guides and flash cards.
- Study Habits helps students in college organize, schedule, learn and succeed.
- Good Study Tips provides tips on how to study and retain information.
- Evernote allows you to capture “notes” whether they are a photo, document or to-do list. Once your note is captured, it becomes available on all your devices. It also allows you to share notes with friends, family or colleagues, as well as search for terms within your notes.
 Randolph, Kathryn Knight. “4 Test-Taking Tips to Get You Through Finals Week.” Fastweb.com. April 19, 2016. http://www.fastweb.com/college-search/articles/the-4-test-taking-tips-to-get-you-through-finals-week