How to Efficiently Prepare for a Test

Studying for a test can be more exhausting than taking the test itself. Not only do we have to figure out which topics or concepts we have to study more diligently than others, but there is also trying to determine how to incorporate studying in the hectic schedule. But, if done with the proper methods and techniques, preparing for a test can be relatively simple, and it won’t be time-consuming.

The number one piece of advice to remember is to always start studying a few days or even a couple of weeks before the actual test. Now, this might seem a bit far-fetched, considering that many people would rather procrastinate than stay at home to read about Sigmund Freud or do multivariable calculus problem sets. But, studying in advance is the greatest trick to efficiently preparing for a test.

First of all, you don’t have to study two hours everyday for the next few days. What you should do is allot the time so that one day’s worth of studying is evenly distributed within five days. Say, for instance, that you have a history test coming up. It will have one hundred questions, plus a short writing portion. This means that you have to study in two ways. But, don’t panic! Start studying the week before, by considering that you may need a total of eight hours to sufficiently cover all the material. How do you know what amount of time is sufficient? If your test covers six chapters, you can guess that it might take you a little over an hour to study each chapter thoroughly.

Then, you can decide either to start studying more than a week in advance, in which case you can study for forty-five minutes per day, leaving out the night before the test. If you decide to study five days before the test, you have four days to go over the material. That means you’ll have to study at least two hours everyday. The last night before the test should be dedicated to summarization and the preparation of the writing portion. Just jot down a few ideas on what you would write about, then keep those in mind.

Studying your notes for at least thirty to forty-five minutes each night will prevent you from ever having to stay up the whole night before the test. You will learn the material better and faster, and you’ll remember it, too. This method has always proven true for me, and I have never had to panic excessively before (or during) a test.

Keep in mind that even if you do have to study some time everyday, it will save you a whole lot of time later on. With this in mind, you’ll be able to tackle any test!