Test Preparation for College Entrance -- Tips and Strategies


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Getting into the college of your choice means scoring high on the college admissions test. In some countries, college admissions exams are administered by the college or university itself. In the US, there are many different tests depending on the Institution. College entrance exams serve a specific purpose. They are used to gauge whether the student can live by the standards of the college and is ready to tackle the academic workload. College entrance test preparation requires both time and diligent study.

To make the preparation for the test easier, we have prepared some tips and guidelines for the day before the test and during the test.

General Tips:

Think positive and psyche yourself. Thinking positive and psyching yourself will literally pave the way for more effective study. Motivating your mind will open it up to what lies ahead. It will also help you gather up the energy and the desire that can sustain your long preparation for the exam. Remember that your future is in your hands.

Research the college of your choice. Make a list of at least the top three colleges or universities where you would like to study and rank them. Find out their required grade on the entrance exam. Once you your target, you know what grade you must reach for.

Make a list of why you want to master the test. This list may come in handy in the future. Like in a couple of weeks when your spirits have shot down and you are feeling lazy. The things you have listed will remind you of why you decided to prepare for this test in the first place.

Gather your study materials. Compile your notes, textbooks and study guides. It is important for you to consult a diverse range of study materials. Study guides that are available online or in the bookstores will provide you with practice tests. Practice tests will give you invaluable practice as well as the general ‘feel’ of the exam. Time yourself when taking the practice tests to familiarize yourself with the time pressure of the real exam.

Assess yourself. Take diagnostic or practice tests. Analyze the result. Mark the areas you could consider your weak areas. Concentrate on these areas when you begin studying.

Draft a study plan. The study plan must include the time frame you will follow along with the topics you need to cover. This will help you systematize your study habits.

Guidelines for the Test Day:

Eat a healthy meal the night before the exam. Having a healthy meal will effectively nourish your faculties. You need to be at your best when you take the test, which includes being properly nourished and hydrated.

Get plenty of sleep. Make sure to have at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep the night before the test. You need to be well rested and relaxed. You don’t want to be drowsy and confused when you take the test, right?

Get up early. By early we mean giving yourself enough time to be fully awake when you take the test. The time here is quite relative. Some people are fully awake a few minutes after waking up, while some could use an hour or so.

Eat a healthy breakfast. Have a nutritious breakfast. Make sure you don’t eat too much. You have to be energized enough, but not too full when you take the exam.

Wear comfortable clothes and dress in layers. You don’t want to be too hot or too cold. You cannot afford to be distracted by anything while taking the test.

College entrance exams need thorough preparation. It may be helpful to know your goals and which college you would like to study in. These simple tips can go a long way when you take your test. Remember, you will not be able to get into the college you want to without pushing yourself

Brian Stocker is a former teacher and Psychologist. He has written widely on education and testing. Visit his website http://www.test-preparation.ca/college/index.html for information, study guides on becoming a teacher, teacher certification and test preparation.


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