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  1. #1
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    Default Intuitives, how do you prepare for and take tests?

    This probably can be tied a lot with high-school and probably college... Took the idea from @bologna's reply to another thread of mine.

    Do you prepare for tests? If so, how long do you spend doing so? Do you keep reading the same thing over and over again to remember it? Do you trust your intuition and don't prepare at all? Do you skim through a notebook or a book for less than a minute just before the test? Do you prepare the last day (or night probably)? Do you prepare but trust your intuition anyway? If you don't prepare, how do you feel about that?

    There's a few questions to get you going to the right direction, however feel free to write a column of text describing it, or better yet, include some examples.

  2. #2
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    I chill for a week while pretending to "revise", then on the night of the test I stay up all night revising like mad. Learn concepts not details. I always got good grades. Saluti.

  3. #3
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    I normally read the subject one day before the test... I can't work well if I'm not under pressure... terrible!

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    Never studied in high school, just read the book.

    In college I would read the book at take notes. Then just read the notes. a few times before the test.

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    For me it's more or less like what Il Morto Che Parla said. If I've taken notes, I probably have most of it down by that point. Occasionally though, more complicated things like calculus or foreign language require a bit of studying.
    ...

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    It has been quite some time for me but I did very well on tests back in my high school and college days. My strategy was:

    - Understand the principles of things as they were explained so I wouldn't have to remember a ton of details. For example, in physics I remembered a few key formulas and knew how to derive everything else from those formulas on the fly. Easier than remembering a ton of formulas. (gets a little tougher in something like history, but I tried to remember why people did things or why events happened, wasn't as good at those type of subjects).

    - Before the test, I would just think about the teacher. What did they like? What were their pet questions? Did they seem to not like some of the subject matter at all and would be likely to skip it? Based on that I would review just the materials I thought would be likely to be on the test for an extra refresher but not waste time and brain on the stuff I thought was unlikely to be there.

    On test day, I would usually read all questions before answering anything. Unless it was a very simple multiple choice or something.

  7. #7
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    Cheers, @Typoz.

    For one, I'll be lazy and quote myself from the other thread:
    Suppose you're going to be given a timed, in-class exam with a few essay questions; it covers material that you have real-world experience in but haven't explicitly studied in quite a while. Your responses will be hand-written, and they'll have to be legible.

    The stakes are pretty high, but you do trust your honed experience. How do you prepare? How do you approach the exam and the questions once you're in the room?

    As for me, I prepared for this one by taking a cursory glance at a few materials and relying on my experience for the rest, because to prepare further would have been fruitless--I didn't know what the questions were actually going to be. Part of me thought that I was being lazy; part of me thought that, in a way, I've spent eight years (of industry experience) preparing for the thing.

    Once in the exam, I skimmed over all of the questions and estimated how long each might take me, so that I can at very worst halfass each one rather than leave any blank. When I focused on a given question, I mulled over the question and jotted down some quick bullet points to discuss in my response. The 1-2 page responses practically flowed from the pencil with little need for correction while I was writing. It's almost as if I distanced myself from the process of writing, letting something else 'pick up the slack.'
    Also, I outright flaunted my expertise by providing responses to pretty much every single contingency plan that I could think of, tying everything back to the big picture, etc. A part of me likes to show off, but I also like coming up with creative, insightful solutions that I can be proud of. I was proud that I could take these questions and provide very comprehensive answers to them. My ego was sated for another day.

    I do remember taking an open-book history exam in 3rd grade. I wanted to prove something to myself by not using the book. I got a D.


    More:
    • I fare worse on tests that require rote memorization of terms and formulas. Back in the day when I was taking math-heavy courses, I couldn't rely on memorizing complicated formulas, so I memorized simple formulas and derived the complicated formulas on the test itself. In general, I trust my ability to piece and patch concepts, ideas, and threads together more than I do my memory. My memory is absolutely unreliable.
    • Early on in my college career, I used to overprepare--I was absolutely a perfectionist with very high standards. I began to relax more and more as I flat out began to trust myself.
    • For each exam, I whittle down my notes to a single one-sided page of college-ruled notebook paper. I prioritized material and determined what was important. Not only did that prioritization reinforce the 'ontology' of the material in my own mind, but it also simplified studying greatly and allowed me to focus my efforts.
    • Multiple choice tests aren't my favorite type of test, but they do allow one to, say, infer the answer to one question from another question.


    In general, I fare best when I can seize a particular question and absolutely squeeze it dry with everything I have.

  8. #8
    Senior Member King sns's Avatar
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    I do a bunch of stuff. Mostly, like, in nursing school, I would try to understand the system first, (cardiac is just a pump with a bunch of pipes and valves, which can lead you to correct conclusions on a multiple choice test.) For stuff that doesn't fit in to the big concept, I drill it in by reading a few times and actually highlighting stuff that I can talk about out loud, that I could explain to someone else. I highlight that stuff on powerpoints so that I know to skip it in the next reading. Like i'll read the whole power point and then just talk to myself out loud about what's going on and then highlight stuff I already said.

    For the non-nursing stuff, I normally liked the essay stuff better because I didn't study much at all, just try to glean stuff from class and skimming and then fill in the blanks with a bunch of fluff that teachers loved.

    I hate lectures, I like to read and come up with the stuff on my own. (like when I was learning arrhythmias I just sat there drawing lightning bolts and squigglys all over a heart shape until I got it.)
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  9. #9
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    I don't.


    Oh yeah, /dumbsensor.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by stalemate View Post
    - Understand the principles of things as they were explained so I wouldn't have to remember a ton of details. For example, in physics I remembered a few key formulas and knew how to derive everything else from those formulas on the fly. Easier than remembering a ton of formulas.
    Quote Originally Posted by bologna View Post
    I memorized simple formulas and derived the complicated formulas on the test itself. In general, I trust my ability to piece and patch concepts, ideas, and threads together more than I do my memory.


    I have never known anyone else who said they did this before...

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