Top Ten Midterm Tips and Tricks

It’s almost time for everyone’s favorite part of the year… midterms! While this can be a stressful period of time for everyone since these tests do count towards final grades, it doesn’t have to be that horrible. There are many different tips and tricks that can help any student do well on these tests. With good study habits and a positive attitude, you can not only get through midterms, but ace them.

  1. Pay attention in class. This first piece of advice sounds like no big deal, but midterms are cumulative of what you have been learning so far in this entire school year. If you pay attention in class, you’re already putting yourself in a good position since you will know all of the information on the test. Sometimes there can even be questions on the little things that you didn’t even know mattered, so always paying attention can help you absorb everything that you’ll need to know.
  2. Use the study guides that you are given. All of the teachers provide you with study guides for a reason, and it is not just to overwhelm you with a gigantic packet that is overflowing with problems. These packets can contain questions exactly like those that you’ll find on the tests, so it is to your benefit to do them all and then look over them the night before the test. You never know, it could be that one problem on the study guide that you were confused about that shows up on the test!
  3. Ask questions. If you don’t know something, ask! Your teacher will be more than happy to help you, be it in class or one on one. Most likely, other people have the same question as you, so you shouldn’t be afraid to ask.
  4. Take advantage of after-school study sessions and review groups. If your teachers have review sessions for your class, you should attend them. Even if you think that you don’t need to or don’t have any questions, getting the extra review is always helpful. Someone might ask a question that you didn’t realize you even had, or the teacher could refresh a concept that you hadn’t thought to study. Also, if your friends create review groups, it might be a good idea to study with them. Besides helping each other out, it’s also a lot more fun than studying on your own.
  5. Look back at some of your old tests and quizzes. If you look at your old tests and quizzes, you can see some of the problems or concepts that you missed the first time around. By reviewing what you’ve gotten incorrect in the past, you can make sure that you know the material in the future. After the test or quiz, you might not have thought to review the information that you got wrong or didn’t know, so now you can. Some teachers have folders that they keep these in and others might have handed them out to you, so locate them and review.
  6. Start organizing yourself as soon as possible. Being organized is one of the most important things for midterms since you have to study for them on top of your regular coursework. If you start your planning earlier and make time to study over the course of the month, it won’t be as overwhelming when it’s the week of the tests. When you plan, make sure that you leave time after completing the packets to ask questions, and schedule in some time to relax. Midterms don’t have to be stressful if you are smart about your time and don’t leave everything up until the last minute.
  7. Prepare whatever you can in advance. For some tests, you can prepare or practice the material in advance. For example, if you have to write an essay and you know what the topic of it is, try writing it once or twice with a timer or coming up with an outline. If you have different charts, graphs, diagrams, or formulas to remember, practice drawing them with a timer so that you can designate the first couple of minutes of the testing period towards doing it. Whatever can be prepared in advance will help you on testing day, so take advantage of that opportunity.
  8. Use the internet and all of the resources it offers. There are a lot of different resources available to you through the internet. Programs like Quizlet can help you organize and study your information wherever you go. Plus, making the flashcards themselves is a great study tool in itself. Videos such as CrashCourse can also help for you to review the information in an entertaining way and Khan Academy is also a great resource. These extra materials can be very helpful, so take advantage of them.
  9. Practice teaching the material to others. Teaching the material that you’re being tested on is a really good way to study. By teaching someone else like a parent or sibling about the material, you’re reinforcing the information for yourself, and then even more so when they ask you questions. Therefore, this may only take you a few minutes, but reciting the information is a good way to practice.
  10. Stay healthy. Overall, staying healthy is the most important thing to do both mentally and physically. The weeks leading up to midterms will be stressful, and it’s much easier to get sick at this point in time. Make sure that you stay healthy, get a good amount of sleep every night, and keep your stress in check. Keep in mind that your health is more important than a test.

With these tips and tricks, you can succeed with your midterms. All it takes is a little bit of hard work and determination.

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