Before you Begin:
Preview the test before you answer anything. This gets you thinking about the material. Make sure to note the point value of each question. This will give you some ideas on budgeting your time.
Quickly calculate how much time you should allow for each section according to the point value. (you don’t want to spend 30 minutes on an essay queston that counts only 5 points.)
During the Test:
Read the directions. (Can more than one answer be correct? Are you penalized for guessing ? etc.) Never assume that you know what the directions say.
Answer the easy questions first. This will give you the confidence and momentum to get through the rest of the test. You are sure these answers are correct.
Go back to the difficult questions. While looking over the test and doing the easy questions, your subconscious mind will have been working on the answers to the harder ones. Also, later items on the test might give you useful or needed information for earlier items. On scrap paper, keep a record of the unanswered items to return to, if time permits.
Answer all questions (unless you are penalized for wrong answers.)
Circle key words in difficult questions. This will force you to focus on the central point.
Make sure to record the answer in the correct place on the answer sheet.
Express difficult questions in your own words. Rephrasing can make it clear to you, but be sure you don’t change the meaning of the question.
Use all of the time allotted for the test. If you have extra time, cover up your answers and actually rework the question. Have time at the end of the exam to review your test and make sure you haven’t left out any answers or parts of answers. This is diffcult to do under the stress of exams, but it often keeps you from making needless errors.
Review: Resist the urge to hand in your test as soon as you have completed all the items Review your test to make sure that you have answered all questions, not mismarked the answer sheet, or made some other simple mistake.
Proofread your writing for spelling, grammar, punctuation, decimal points, etc.
Produced by the Greene County ESC – Oct 2004