Tips on What Makes a Successful Test-Taker

Think of how many “tests” we actually take in a school setting and even beyond, in our adult lives. Tests to be a real estate agent, to enter graduate school, law school, or medical school. Tests to be a fire fighter, a personal trainer, a nurse, an acupuncturist. We take a test to become a certified accountant, a licensed massage therapist, and a dietitian. Remember those ACT and SAT tests or the proficiency tests that are so common in the public schools now? We are tested to “death.” 분당스웨디시

Just think, there are many people that might not have followed a passion or a particular career path because they couldn’t or were afraid they couldn’t “pass” the test to license or certify them or allow them admittance into a program of study.

YET, who teaches a person how to be good at taking tests? I know I was never taught. It has been a matter of trial and error for me.

And, as I have developed strategies for getting better than average scores, my confidence and belief that I am a better than average test-taker has risen. That’s half the battle, isn’t it? You have to BELIEVE that you can be successful in your testing endeavor.

Some people would call this belief, self-efficacy, or the confidence that, since you had been successful in other things you have attempted in your life, you can be successful, taking a test for certification or licensure or entrance to college, or graduate school, medical school, or law school.

Here are several key things I remember as I am preparing to “sit for” a test.

I REPEAT and REPEAT and REPEAT again the concepts, knowledge, skills that I am being tested on. Whether you are preparing for and giving a speech (test-like situation since you will be evaluated on the end result) or have a part in a play or musical where you are “tested” on your lines, or you are taking a test for a grade in a class – a person has to practice to get good performance.

Several of my suggestions- teach someone else a concept you need to master. Take your child or a fellow student and explain a concept you will be tested on. I made my way through massage therapy school tutoring others on the anatomy and physiology content so that I rarely studied since I kept repeating the concepts to others who needed the help.

DRAW PICTURES of concepts you will have to know instead of spending all of your time preparing by looking at notes taken. When helping someone learn the bones in the hand, I have the person trace their hand on paper and then write in all the bone names, then throw away the paper and do the same thing again.

Involve as many senses as possible as you learn and study the material you will be tested on. Utilize opportunities for VISUAL, KINESTHETIC and AUDITORY learning whenever you can. If learning the bones and muscles of the body, get a good resource for pictures, touch your own body or that of a skeleton as you are identifying origins and insertions of muscles as bony landmarks.

Say things aloud as you study so that you can hear the ideas that you are trying to grasp. This helps with the auditory component of learning. If you are sitting in on classes, lectures, workshops, or the like, ask the presenter if s/he would allow you to record the presentation so that you can then hear the information presented repeatedly after the fact.

OVERLEARN the information you are being tested on. Set up a schedule, write yourself in as an appointment on your calendar. Commit to test preparation each day for a prescribed amount of time. By “doing” your time, you develop more confidence that you can be successful on the test. But, you must stay away from the old nemesis that so many of us have – procrastination. Start early in your preparation. If something happens and you miss a day, it won’t have a huge impact on the outcome.

Seldom as we grow up are we taught how to take tests. Still being “tested” is a part of life. If you have a belief that you are not a “good” test-taker (a comment which I hear from too many people), you most likely will continue along this path of less than desirable results on tests. OR, you can “catch” yourself as you repeat these “old” messages that “say” you don’t test well and CHANGE THE MESSAGE! If you want different results, you have to change the way you are doing things! Try AFFIRMING repeatedly that “I am capable of performing well on this test”.

The take-home point…the soap-box message? Set yourself up for success at the big speech you must give, the test you are preparing to take, the theatrical performance you have coming up. BELIEVE that you can be at the “top of your game” by REPETITION of the speech, your lines, or the content to be tested. Change your preparation up by involving all of your senses – HEAR, SEE, AND FEEL what you will be “tested” on. DRAW PICTURES of concepts whenever possible. Start preparation well in advance of your “performance” by scheduling regular time to practice = OVERLEARN.

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