We’ve all been there. We go to school from kindergarten to university (optional), and along the way we are tested to prove ourselves worthy of matriculating to the next level. This means passing exams, which most of us hate, and even worse, preparing for them.
The issue is if you haven’t mastered effective study habits, you’re likely to fail the tests.
Effective study habits are necessary to help you focus on, organize, and learn your course material. Forming studying habits also helps you to know which type of studying (group or individual) works best for you.
Whether you work better by studying by yourself or in groups, great study habits begin with 5Ps: Proactive Preparation Produces Positive Performance.
Consider these ideas to put the 5Ps to work for you and pass your exams:
1. Proactive. Avoid waiting until the teacher announces that they will be giving an exam before you start studying. It’s most beneficial to decide that from the first day of school, you’ll do everything differently:
● Use the Course outlines to guide you to scheduled exam dates.
● Start reading ahead from the outset. Take notes from course materials ahead of time, so your classes will help clarify the most important points. With this technique, going over the material in class actually helps to instill the ideas in your brain with greater understanding and repetition as well.
● Keep a notebook that lists each Course and the scheduled dates of the exams. This makes it easier to see at a glance all the exams that you have and helps you to pace yourself. This notebook is also useful for jotting down insights regarding the scheduled exams.
2. Preparation. Clearly identify the areas and the depth of the material that you will need to cover. Get clarity from the teacher. Gather any necessary textbooks and supporting materials. This way, their expectation is in sync with yours and you can work with the most pertinent materials.
3. Produces. Make written notes of important points when going over course materials and in class. Of course, you’ll want to produce accurate notes so that you’ll have correct information to review!
● To prevent losing focus and making mistakes, ensure that you avoid all distractions (phones, music, television, radio, friends, multi-tasking, and social media) while writing your notes.
● Check your work before relying on it as a study guide. In doing this, not only will you be checking for accuracy, but your brain will also be soaking up that knowledge from the repetition.
4. Positive. The fact that you spent time to reason with the material, study it, and otherwise grapple with the course will cause you to triumph over the exams. You have put in the hard work. You can expect positive results!
5. Performance. You’ve exercised effective study habits. It’s time for the test. Have a good night’s sleep, relax, and you’ll have good success.
The 5Ps of passing any exam is a simple mantra that reminds you that Proactive Preparation Produces Positive Performance. Use these tips starting from the beginning of any course to help you prepare for the exams and you’ll enjoy great success on exam day!