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Mastering the Test – Winning Test Taking Strategies


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Learning Objective: Investigate test-taking skills to achieve higher assessment scores

Being prepared for tests is not an easy process. Even if you are prepared, tests can still make you feel anxious. Why is being a good test taker so important in college? In colleges and universities, much of a student’s grades are based on quiz and test performance. Doing well on these tests is typically a major indicator on your subject matter knowledge and a good indicator of how you would perform in the workplace. Having good test scores will jumpstart your career. In this seminar, we will address test-taking and test preparation tips and strategies for college-level tests. Applying helpful test-taking and test preparation skills addressed in this seminar, such as writing down everything you remember, reading the directions, browsing the test questions, putting together a plan, and making an educated guess, will teach you how to prepare for and perform well on any test so that you feel confident that you’re bringing your testing A-game.

At the end of this seminar, participants will be able to:

a. Review the factors that limit achieving higher college assessment scores.
b. Identify practices for dealing with test anxiety.
c. Measure current test-taking methods’ validity.
d. Generate more efficient techniques for improving assessment scores.

Published in: Self Improvement
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Mastering the Test – Winning Test Taking Strategies

  1. 1. Preparing For a Test? Here is a Winning Strategy Dr. Malika Grayson
  2. 2. Who Am I? • Born in NYC • Raised in Trinidad and Tobago • Adelphi University • Bachelors Degree in Physics • Cornell University • Masters of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering • PhD in Mechanical Engineering • Northrop Grumman Corporation • Future Technical Leader, Class of 2019 • Systems Engineer • Employee Resource Groups • Extracurricular • Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Jelani Girls Inc. BOD member, Blogging, Traveling, Cooking, Volunteering
  3. 3. How Do You Prepare? • Prepare from Day 1 • Attend class regularly • Take notes but not essays • Do not wait until the test period to start review • Review notes on intervals • Set goals • Use flash cards • Take advantage of class mates
  4. 4. How Do You Prepare? (cont.) • Clarify the topics that you are being tested on • Understand the syllabus • Find out the topics the test will be covering • Percentage of test type (multiple choice, essay) • Determine your study technique or style • Set study goals • Use your syllabus and class notes as a guide • Study Surround Memorization Alternate Review Time (S.M.A.R.T)
  5. 5. Study S.M.A.R.T • Surround yourself with others who can help • Professors • Teaching Assistant • Discussion Groups (Online) • Study/Homework Group
  6. 6. Study S.M.A.R.T (cont.) • Memorization is less valuable than true understanding • By knowing the concepts and the big picture, you can see not just where you are coming from but where you may going • Means understanding the why
  7. 7. Study S.M.A.R.T (cont.) • Alternate where you study • Allows for visual change • Ask questions during the review periods • New environment leads to a refreshed mindset
  8. 8. Study S.M.A.R.T (cont.) • Review previous tests • Assess the areas you did well or need improvement • This helps in predicting test questions • Observe professor’s teaching style Break out session! How can you predict test questions?
  9. 9. Study S.M.A.R.T (cont.) • Timing is Everything • Start early • Review often • Make the most of homework assignments and quizzes
  10. 10. Identifying The Challenges Break out session!  What are some of the challenges in test taking?  What are some of the ways to overcome these challenges?
  11. 11. Challenges • Time constraint • Surroundings/distractions • Self-doubt in responses • Anxiety How do we overcome these challenges?
  12. 12. You B.R.E.A.T.H.E • Browse through the test • Underline and circle key words • Recall/Resume/Write notes on each questions • Key points
  13. 13. You B.R.E.A.T.H.E (cont.) • Educated guesses/Elimination • Answer the question to yourself before saying what the options are • Ask for clarification
  14. 14. You B.R.E.A.T.H.E (cont.) • Time Management • Look at the point value of the questions to determine time allowance • Have Confidence • Trust yourself and the knowledge you have on the test material • Explain • Be thorough and thoughtful but clean and clear
  15. 15. Pre-Test Self Care • Rest • Eat • Wear comfortable clothes • Early arrival • Sit close to the front
  16. 16. Different Test Types Which test stresses you out the most? • Multiple Choice • Short Answer • Essay Questions • Oral • Closed vs Open book
  17. 17. Different Test Types (cont.) • Multiple Choice • Process of elimination • Educated guess • Commonalties in choices
  18. 18. Activity Source:
  19. 19. Activity (cont.) Source:
  20. 20. Activity (cont.) Source:
  21. 21. Activity (cont.) Source:
  22. 22. Different Test Types (cont.) • Multiple Choice • Process of elimination • Educated guess • Commonalties in choices • Short Answer • Be brief in your response • Be direct
  23. 23. Strategies for Different Test Types • Essay Questions • Make a note of all the key points • Expand thoughtfully on each key point • Be mindful of essay question vocabulary What are some commonly used terms?
  24. 24. Exercise
  25. 25. Strategies for Different Test Types • Oral • Ask for the facilitator to repeat the question • Ask specific questions if you still do not understand • Closed vs Open book • Study for an open book test as if it were closed • Index pages that especially relate to the syllabus • Formulas, definitions, diagrams • Use B.R.E.A.T.H.E technique in both instances
  26. 26. Takeaways • B.R.E.A.T.H.E • Investigate the criteria for grading your answers • Budget your time accordingly • Use facts for support • For difficult explanations, use charts to make your answer more exact • Partial answers are better than none • PROOFREAD
  27. 27. Thank You! QUESTIONS?
  28. 28. Contact Information Malika Grayson • Email: • • LinkedIn: • Malika Grayson • Instagram: • @blackgirlsguide2gradschool • Website: •
  29. 29. Reference • • Crossword generated using online software