Kyu's test taking preparation strategy:
1. Go to school and pay attention. I do whatever I can to make sure I am alert, awake, and alive in class. I sleep well beforehand, eat to satisfaction but not sedation, bring everything I need, arrive early, and leave late. I take notes, ask questions, interact as much as possible. There is no better preparation for a test than paying attention in a class. To really be completely involved and focused on it will trigger far more memories.
2. I complete all of the homework while it is fresh in my brain. Homework, sad as it is, is very helpful, and although I am not one to do homework at home, I will go to the library immediately after a class and continue to work on the homework until satisfied. Re-learning it without help immediately after all of that help sort of helps set it all in my brain.
3. Re-visit older lectures 10 days before a test. Anything that wasn't two weeks ago I go through and take the time to re-read them. Just skim the chapters, read the notes I took, freshen up everything, so it all feels like it happened recently.
4. DO THE REVIEW SHEETS!! Nothing, NOTHING NOTHING helps more than review sheets! They're gifts from the heavens. I do them completely to standard every single test 1 week before the test. If the review sheet is handed out any later than 1 week, then I do it the day I get it and don't stop until it's all completed. Then, I worry about nothing until the day of the exam.
5. Cram before a big test. I will go over some notes, big things, and tricky things the night before... but the day of the test? Nothing gets done. I don't do anything except go to school and study ALL DAY for the test. (I also never ever take morning classes... bad idea in my humble opinion.) I sneak into a corner, get some other people from the class together if necessary, go over every single note, every single page in the textbook, and I don't quit until I have all sections and chapters sufficiently memorized. I will re-write entire sections, create mnemonics to remember things, set up clever little things that help me memorize aspects of a section, etc. I'm a tyrant and having the test coming up helps keep me focused.
By the time the test comes around, I am sufficiently exhausted, my brain is crammed full of crap, and I feel like I could die from the sheer weight of all the memorization. When the test is actually handed out, by that time, I'm just calm out of sheer exhaustion, and I take my time and read every question carefully and methodically and allow my brain to just soak in each question.. if I am unsure, I skip it and go until the very end. Then I re-visit the question, use my best judgment, and I don't worry about it at all besides that.
Whatever grade I get is what I get... but I've been known to be an A student, so I must be doing something right.