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Exam Preparation and Performance Jennifer Zimmerman Assistant Director Academic Resource Center Mercer University http faculty mercer edu When Do You Start Studying for an Exam On the first day of class How Read your syllabus with a fine tooth comb Write in your exam schedule on your semester planner Stay on top of your coursework from that day forward Never Stop Studying for the Exam Do all your work thinking about how you can make it easier to study for your next and final exams Design your notes so that they can easily be reduced into useful study summaries Listen in class so you know exactly what will be on the test Take time to generate questions that will help you recite and reflect on the material to be tested Use Cornell Method Notes and Follow these Study Steps Record make notes legible and complete Reduce write questions cues and vocabulary in cue column prioritize with silver dollar system Pauk p 114 Recite test self with verbal or written exercises based on cue column and summary Reflect expand and analyze implications generate searching questions Review utilize summary to locate selected topics for repetitive recitation Recitation as a Rehearsal Strategy Steps Read Convert to a question Test Benefits Involved Feedback Motivation Distinctions More than re reading Cultivates recall over and above simple recognition Create Summary Sheets that Fold over to display questions and cover up answers or use index cards repetition and recitation Focus on silver dollar prioritizations summaries and some cue questions reduction Relate to questions that are of particular interest to you reflection Motivation Conceptual organization topical categorical Pauk p 355 http muskingum edu cal database Testprepg html Visual Organizers Use your own words and representations Organize to reduce information to a manageable amount without losing conceptual depth Prepare tools for rehearsal strategies CARDS Nist Holschuh pp 225 8 Concept maps and charts Compare contrast charts Flow Charts Time lines Fishbone maps Spider maps Word maps Frayer models Color coded notes http muskingum edu cal database Testprepb html Memorization Techniques Association link new information to prior knowledge or experiences Rehearsal use different learning modalities Relevance make the information meaningful to your personal beliefs or to a broader understanding of the course Mnemonics if you are an auditory learner use songs instead of simple lists or words Clustering give in to the 7 plus or minus 2 rule and find logical groupings that streamline what you have to memorize Self testing practice putting yourself in a testing situation http muskingum edu cal database Testprepb html Be Prepared to Get the Most Out of a Study Group Legible notes and summary sheets can be shared Pre defined questions will expedite group study sessions Questions written at the time that material is first learned will be more accurate memory refreshers Comparing questions will allow the group to quickly



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