Find out what kind of test you will be taking. Multiple choice, essay, short answer? When you find out what style of test it is, familiarize yourself with how it is conducted. If it is a standardized, multiple choice test, find out if it benefits you to make a guess or leave the question blank if you don't know how to answer it.
Make sure you know the content of the test. If you need to know a lot of vocabulary words in order to answer the questions, make sure you study the words well. Make flash cards, have a friend drill you, and study the definitions.
If the test is on class reading or lecture, make sure you review your notes, the studyguide from the teacher, and highlights from the text. If you have discussed certain topics in class, make sure that you understand the discussion and review the main points.
Take your time studying. Start preparing a week or so in advance, spending a little time each night on studying content. Make studyguides, use flashcards, get a friend to help you. If a friend tests you on the content, you will learn it better and be more prepared for the test.
Don't be afraid to ask your teacher for pointers. They may give you a studyguide of topics to study, or tell you what to look at closely. When you show a teacher that you are concerned about your performance, it means a lot. The teacher wants you to succeed, and will help you to do your best.
The night before the test, sleep well. Don't stay up late cramming, it's better to be well rested. In the morning, eat a good breakfast, and try to stay relaxed. Panicking won't help. Wear layers so you can be comfortable in the room where you're taking the test. Bring tissues in your pocket and maybe a cough drop. Go to the restroom before you sit down to the test, so nothing distracts you and you can just focus on testing.
And then just trust yourself. Good luck!
I agree with all who answered before me. There are a few other things you can do to help boost your test performance. Physical activity before the test helps boost test scores. Not extreme activity, but activity that raises your heart rate and increases blood flow. This helps "wake up" the brain and prepare it for work.
"Dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine — all of these are elevated after exercise," says Ratey. "So having a workout will help focus, calming down, and impulsivity— it's like taking a little bit of Prozac and a little bit of Ritalin."
Diet is another important factor in test performance. Studies have shown that eating blueberries before testing actually increases speed of mental processing. Eating breakfast has been shown to improve children's behavior in school and on standardized tests.
I have an additional approach to think about. Studies suggest that up to two-thirds of people under the age of 23 are sleep deprived. I'll take the fact that you are posting your question after midnight as an indicator that you might be one of them :-)
There is value in studying, but your brain needs several things to be able to learn and retrieve information, and one of the most crucial of these is sleep. Try making sure you get eight hours the night before a test at least, and if you can get in the habit, try getting eight hours every night. You'll be amazed at the difference it makes on any number of fronts.
Secondly, your brain needs water. All of your organs do. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate the day before and the morning of a big exam. And get a good breakfast - brain food such as eggs, oatmeal, oranges, bananas, orange juice and milk. Avoid caffeine and sugar.
Lastly, bring some peppermints with you to the test. Peppermint has been clinically proven to stimulate brain function.
All the study tips above are very helpful too, but don't ignore the physical requirements for learning as well. Good luck!
There are several ways to get good test results. The first thing to do is to prepare for the test. This does not start by studying for it the night before but it begins in class when you first start to learn the material. First of all, note taking is very important. When you take notes in class they should be neatly written and organized so that when you look back through them you will be able to understand them. You should also review your notes every night. You do not necessarily have to spend a great deal of time doing this but you should at least review them. The night before the test you should study but it is also very important to be relaxed about it. If you are prepared for an exam you will have more self confidence and this will help you as well. In addition, don't forget to use your teacher for help. That is what they are there for so if you have any questions prior to the exam make sure you talk to them.
You will find different results for this particular question. Little in way of a "magic answer" can be given. I think that different people experienced success in different ways. Some basic tenets can be followed. The first would be to prepare for studying in an exam well before it is to be administered. While there are those who do well studying the night before, I don't think it's a policy that can be openly advised. I think being able to study in increments before the assessment would allow the information to settle in your own mind, allow questions to be asked and answered, and make the process less stressful because of its incremental nature. Additionally, using the syllabus or study guide of the teacher to guide in the preparation of the studying process would be helpful in the process. Finally, being able to open a potential line of dialogue with the teacher or instructor might allow you to gain a better idea of how the exam is going to be structured, what are some definite topics that will be on it, and ensure that there is another resource to assist you, making for a less lonely and isolated process in seeking to do well.
In order to do well on tests, you must have to study. The key is studying the material that will be on your test. Read each paragraph in your textbook, highlight key points or key vocabulary and take extra notes on topics that you don't understand as well. Also, I suggest you take practice quizzes/tests within the book or online.
Thanks a lot to everyone who answered before me, it helped (Note: I'm was in Australia at that time I posted this note so that's why I seemed to be posting after midnight)