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Study Guide

STUDY GUIDE FOR EXAMS AND TESTS

Preparing for your Exams

  • Know what is going to be on the exam. Your teacher will often give you an outline. Be there for review days... they are important. Ask questions!!
  • Know what equipment you are going to need for the exam and write it down. Ensure that you have everything you need that day.
  • Come with an extra pen or pencil.
  • Know if you are allowed a formula/information sheet in the exam. Some subjects will allow a formula sheet etc.
  • Be sure to wear comfortable clothing.
  • Make sure that your notes are complete... check with a friend.

Choosing a Place to Study

  • As much as possible, do your studying in one particular place.
  • Make sure that your place to study has good lighting. Using a bright light in an otherwise dark room will tire your eyes.
  • Keep the area in which you are studying clear of clutter.
  • Use a straight chair that is not too comfortable.
  • Eliminate DISTRACTING noises. A slight, regular background noise may, however, help you to concentrate. If the music or TV program you are listening to is drawing your attention then it is distracting.
  • Turn off your cell phone, MSN, facebook etc. You need to concentrate.

Budgeting Your Study Time

  • Set up a special study schedule to prepare yourself for your exams. Plan it so that everything can be covered in the time available. DO NOT wait and CRAM.
  • Prepare a timetable that clearly indicates when you will be busy studying. Use your planner to help you. Do not allow other things to interfere with your study time.
  • Do not study for more than 20-30 minutes at a time. Take a short break (5-10 minutes) every 20-30 minutes to refuel, rest and reset your brain.
  • If certain facts or details must be memorized, do not try to do it all at once. Use flash cards to help and try to set aside a number of days to memorize the information.
  • If you set aside time to study throughout the semester, you will remember more by exam time (review all information learned at the end of each week and again at the end of the unit).

Retaining What You Have Learned

  • After reading a chapter in a textbook, listening to a lecture, or following a discussion, make a summary of it. You will discover that summarizing is an effective aid to retention.
  • As soon and as often as possible, try to apply what you have learned.
  • Make up questions that you think may be on the exam and try to answer them.
  • Get a good night's rest before the exam and begin the exam day with a good breakfast.

Develop an Awareness of What You Do Not Understand

  • Use a study tool such as a concept map or flash cards to pinpoint areas of weakness
  • As you are going through your notes to study, make a list of concepts, terms, theories, etc... that you have difficulty with.
  • Use important school resources to help you learn the information that you do not understand:
  • Your teacher or another teacher in that department
  • Math Café or lunch time extra help groups
  • Learning Resource Teachers, Library.
  • Guidance
  • Peer Tutors

Writing the Exam

  • First thing to do is skim the exam and READ THE DIRECTIONS.
  • Use the marking scheme as a guide to decide how much time should be allotted to each question.
  • Answer the easiest questions first. It is important to get off to a good start. After return to those that you have left. Always write something for each question. You may get part marks. Trust your instincts.
  • Read questions several times to ensure that you understand what is being asked.
  • Always write an answer in sentence form unless it specifically calls for a list.
  • If in doubt, guess at multiple choice questions. Eliminate the answers that you KNOW are wrong and guess at what is left.
  • Be on the lookout for words that may provide a clue to the correct answer.
  • NEVER change an answer unless you are ABSOLUTELY sure it is wrong. Again trust your instincts!!!
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