6 Study Tips So You’ll Pass the Board Exam

We may all have heard of this advice before: Study smarter not harder.

Sounds good, right?  But how does one study smarter and not harder? How do you know that you are studying smarter and not just harder?

Fortunately, we came across this material showing strategies advocated by cognitive psychologists in studying effectively. Memorize Academy asked cognitive psychologists from www.LearningsScientist.org and came up with 6 essential strategies in studying effectively.

We know, we know. You may not have enough time to look it up, so we have conveniently summarized the skills below. We hope that the tips can help you prepare effectively for the most grueling exam of your life. This is particularly helpful when you review for any board exam, be it the Licensure Exam for Teachers (LET), the Nursing Licensure Exam (NLE), the Civil Service Exam, or others!

1. Spaced Practice

No Cramming. Five hours cramped into one intensive study session is not as effective as the same 5 hours spaced out in 1 week. You will learn more or get the same number of materials covered in less time and get better results. This will make you learn more, and shorter time will be needed to review the materials in the future. Make a plan and create shorter study sessions in your calendar. This is not about marathon intensive study. Key is consistent short study sessions over time.

2. Interleaving

Switch between or among topics when studying. Don’t study one topic or idea for too long. Find links between ideas and topics. However, make sure you study enough info on one topic before switching. Don’t stay too long in one topic nor switch frequently. For the next study session, try to change order you work through topics to strengthen understanding. Switching may feel harder that studying just one topic for long periods of time but it is more effective. But remember we want to use the most effective method and not the easiest one.

3. Elaboration

Ask, Explain, and Connect. Ask yourself question “how and why” things work and connect ideas with daily experience.  Explain and describe ideas into many details as you can. This forces you to understand what you are learning and connect them to what you already know. Understanding how ideas are similar and different makes learning more effective.

4. Concrete Examples

Use specific concrete examples. Human memories hook on concrete ideas more than abstract ideas so you can rely on real-life examples to understand things better. Look out for examples in your daily life. Thinking of your own relevant examples will be most helpful in your learning.

5. Dual Coding

Combining verbal material with visual materials can be more effective in retaining information. Find visuals in notes and textbook and examine image and its connection with the text. Try to connect visuals and words. Try to create different ways when trying to present information to be learned. You may learn best when you combine words with pictures.

6. Retrieval Practice

Recall what you know. Put away your text book and write down everything you can recall from your studies. Retrieving knowledge reinforces what you learn. Improvement comes with practice. If you want to practice recalling items during an examination, then you can practice recalling the materials now. Just like in any skill, practice makes perfect. Highlights what you don’t know so you now what to focus on. How exactly do you do this – sample exams, or just simply writing down the concepts and ideas together. DO this after a while. Put away your notes. Compare your output to your notes for feedback.

So there you go, 6 essential strategies you may use in your board exam preparations. The link to the full video is available below. We hope that you have found this useful! Good luck in the upcoming board exam!

Source: Memorize Academy