How to cram the night before a test

You’re in panic mode. You’ve got one of your biggest exams tomorrow and you have no idea where to start. All you know is if you go in as unprepared as you are right now, you’ll fail miserably. Not everyone knows how to cram, and it’s usually not the best tactic but hey, we can’t go back in time and pay attention in class can we? Here’s how to cram the night before an exam to make sure you actually pass:

1. Make sure you’re in a quiet spot where you won’t be distracted

Sure, study halls or computer labs can be a good place to study during the semester but it’s better to be somewhere where you can have silence if you need it and not have anyone around you. Get in the zone.

2. Put your phone away. far away

This is an obvious one but so many students nowadays get anxiety being away from their phones too long. Give yourself time to read everything on Facebook first then put it away in a lockbox or with your mam.

3. Make a list of topics from your syllabus which you need to study

If this is the first time you’re really paying attention to your course work, then you’ve gotta use some brain power to figure out which topics were the most important this semester and will likely be on the test. Make a study plan and start at the beginning. You don’t need to focus too much on the details at this point – just the main ideas. Write down notes that will be easy to read and understand in your revision later.

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4. Make flow-charts and diagrams

You might feel like you don’t have much time but just take a deeeep breath. You need to focus! One of the best ways to retain information is to make easy-to-read diagrams and charts that make sense to you. Not only will this help you digest what you’re studying, you’ll also be able to look back later and understand it quickly.

5. Get a friend to quiz you

If you have a friend who can help you study, bribe them until they say yes. Make a list of questions and get them to quiz your knowledge.

6. Use YouTube to explain any topic you don’t understand

This is especially helpful for anyone studying a language or a complex degree like engineering. Just got straight to YouTube and take notes of someone explaining it properly, as most of us know a textbook isn’t always written in layman’s terms.

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7. Borrow someone else’s class notes

If you have a BFF in your class who actually paid attention or came to class this year, then see if you can borrow their notes. See what they thought was important information and copy it down in your notes.

8. Find last year’s test if you can

Sometimes you’ll be able to get a copy of the test from last year. If you’re lucky, your test will have pretty similar questions on it. At the very least, it’s a useful resource for testing out what you’ve learned in your cramming!

9. Do a refresher the morning of the exam

When you wake up, get out your notes and revise them again. Use mnemonics like a song or rhyme to help you remember little bits of information. And get a friend or partner to help you revise everything.

10. Nail the exam

You’re gonna be great. And if not, then it’ll be OK! It’s not the end of the world and you might get a second chance. Or it could be the wake-up call you need!

Oh and also make sure you take a break and get some sleep. Your brain will not remember anything if you’re tired! Good luck.

Also read: Mindblowingly Simple Study Hacks That Will Help You Prepare For Your Exams

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You’ve procrastinated for who knows how long, and you’re arriving at the point where, if you don’t start studying now, you’ll go into the test with a head devoid of information. You probably know this already, but this happens to everyone. As long as you don’t make a habit out of it, you’re fine. You’ll have a chance to reflect on what you did and why it was bad later on, now let’s focus on getting you through the test with a passing grade.

Get Your Space Ready

If you can, go to a public space. Even though it’s been well-documented in the Internet that people can fall asleep pretty much anywhere, you should make sleeping an unappealing option by placing yourself as far away as possible from your bed. If you can’t go to a cafe or library, make sure you make yourself as uncomfortable as possible to stave off sleep. Don’t wear sweatpants, don’t sit in a chair you can lay in, and stay as far away from pillows as possible. Clean your desk and use it.

Get everything ready, including but not limited to: textbooks, notes, writing utensils, something to drink and something to snack on. Ideally, you’ll be sitting at this desk without getting up for awhile, so try and prepare everything beforehand.

You have to strike a balance between breaks and working, so set a timer for 50 minutes, and don’t lift your head from that textbook before it’s up. As soon as time’s up, get up and move! Go to the bathroom, make some tea or just walk around for a bit to give yourself some energy.

If you’re using a computer, don’t go on Facebook, Twitter or wherever else you prefer to waste time online. You’ll no doubt end up in a content vortex and won’t come out until an hour later. There’s no time to waste right now, so if you’re using anything with a screen to study, just leave it for the duration of the break.

Be Efficient

When you have limited time to study, you can’t afford to read all the chapters in-depth. If you encounter some information that you can’t parse on your first read through and it’s not absolutely vital, it might be best to just move on. A lot of this process is basically going to be throwing information into your head, and hoping it sticks.

Don’t use a highlighter. All the highly relevant information is probably going to be bolded or highlighted in another way in your textbook. Highlighting is for when you need to find stuff in a wall of text for later use, and with the time constraints that you’re under at most what you can hope is one thorough reading of the text. Yeah, it seems like some vague attempt at doing what students who don’t need to cram do, but highlighters are not magical.

After you finish each chapter, get a piece of paper and write down all the information that you think you will need when taking the test, in bullet point form, with headings and subheadings. This will do wonders for what information you retain, and you’ll quickly see what parts of the chapter you’ll need to revise to cover the gaps – if you have the time to do that, that is. Try these helpful memory improvement tecniques to memorize better!

Go to Bed

After you’ve done all your reading, drink a glass of water and head off for some sleep. You’ll need at least a power nap before the exam, since coming in with your brain fried from all the information you’ve been cramming into it won’t do any good.

After waking up and getting ready, read through your notes. If you read the textbook, the stuff you’ve written down should bring up related information. See? Results!

After it’s all over, take a look at how you got yourself in this situation. If you routinely have to cram for exams the night before, then it’s time to think about how you can reverse the habit. Resolve to always be on top of your reading and never turn in your homework late. Staying up all night to get a passing grade is a huge toll, and, in any case, barely passing every test you have shouldn’t be the way you spend your time in college.

It’s December. That means apple cider, family, Christmas lights, and (that’s right; you guessed it) finals. I’m in a coffee shop surrounded by college students cramming for finals. The girl across the room is about to rub a bald spot in her hair trying to figure out calculus. The guy in the corner just started laughing. He also has a math book open. Nothing’s funny about math; there are no humorous story problems. He might be losing his mind.

Every successful student has to cram for an exam every once and a while. We’ve included seven steps to help you do so without becoming that guy in the corner of the coffee shop laughing at math problems:

1. Gather All Your Materials before you cram for an exam

Make sure you have all your notes and books with you. By now you shouldn’t need your books because you’ve taken good notes. But it couldn’t hurt. Also make sure you’ve got a pencil or pen, a notebook or legal pad, and you shouldn’t need much else. Paper and pen are plenty to cram for an exam.

2. Turn off social media

Social media is electronic ADHD. It will sink a cram session like an elephant in a row boat. Furthermore, Kim Kardashian won’t tweet anything in the next 50 minutes to improve your geometry grade. I promise. Texting, Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Pinterest, etc., are great, but take a break to cram for exams.

3. Turn on a timer

Cramming is about finding a good rhythm. If you study for 6 hours straight, you’re more likely to drool on your test than pass it. We recommend a 50/10 split: 50 minutes studying, 10 minutes of anything else. On your break, exercise, or sing, or dance, or sit still, or play soccer with the neighbor’s house cat. You pick. Then get back to work. Setting a timer will help you find a rhythm.

4. Focus only on the Big Ideas and Key Details

Remember, you are cramming at this point. Any learning here has a limited shelf-life, so stick to the basics. You are learning just the main ideas and the key details. Those are the things that are most likely to be on the test, so focus your energy there. Look for headings, key people, dates, equations, vocab words, and explanations of major ideas. Filter the rest.

5. Involve all your senses to cram for an exam

Warning: only try this at home. Practicing this in public may brand you as a crazy person. We know you aren’t – you are just a great student. So talk to yourself. Every big idea you read, talk it out. Explain things to yourself. Make lots of hand motions. Pace if it helps. Emphasize words with a funny accent. The crazier you look, the better. No, crazy people don’t remember more. But the more senses and emotions involved the more you’ll remember.

6. Make your own study guide

Whether or not your teacher/prof. gave you a study guide, you need to make your own to cram for an exam. This is far and away the best method to study for an exam. After just making the guide yourself, 80% of your work will be done. You’re cramming, so it doesn’t have to be neat. Only you have to be able to read it. Writing it out, reading as you go, involving all your senses – it’s like an information shoe horn.

7. Set goals and rewards as you cram for an exam

Who wants ice cream?

You do, but only if you finish your study guide before 10 pm. You can’t eat too late because it gives you weird dreams, but you can’t have the Rocky Road until your study guide is done. Deadlines and rewards will help you stay on track. Use a carrot if you’d rather, but I find mint chocolate chip more motivating. Since you are a successful student, you recognize that setting a personal goal for yourself will help you keep moving without getting bogged down.

How about you? Do you have any other helpful tips to add to this list? I’m going to get some ice cream.

Author

Lecturer, ARC DECRA, RMIT University

Disclosure statement

Amy Reichelt receives funding from the Australian Research Council.

Partners

RMIT University provides funding as a strategic partner of The Conversation AU.

In our five-part series, Making Sense of Exams, we’ll discuss the purpose of exams, whether they can be done online, overcoming exam anxiety, and effective revision techniques.

The date for an important exam is looming. You know you have to study for it. Suddenly, it’s the evening before the dreaded date, and you feel like you haven’t studied enough, if at all. It’s time to cram all the information you can into your brain.

We know that to do well in exams, you have to remember your material to then demonstrate your knowledge during the test. But is an intense night of study an effective way of learning?

Learning information that can then be recalled in an often stressful environment is taxing on the brain.

In the best situations we can forget things like our colleague’s names when trying to introduce them to someone.

In a high pressure situation our brains can easily perform sub-optimally.

How to remember information in the long term

In cognitive psychology, a discrimination can be drawn between deep and shallow processing of information. This is known as the Levels of Processing theory which was proposed by researchers in the 1970’s. They argued that “deep processing” led to better long-term memory than “shallow processing”.

Shallow processed information can be encoded by the brain based on the simple characteristics of the words, rather than the meaning. So the knowledge is only able to be stored in short-term memory stores, where it is only retained for a short period.

To process information deeply, the meaning and importance of the information is encoded. Relations between concepts are linked together in an elaborate manner, so more understanding of the information is able to be demonstrated.

Due to the more meaningful analysis of the material, stronger and more long lasting memories can be formed.

Taking the time to elaborate and assign meaning to information allows easier recall. However, this process takes time, and when an entire subject needs to be crammed into your memory in a short period of time, deep processing can’t be performed.

So cramming can work for a short-term recall of the information, but this information will rapidly be lost.

Re-reading notes is not enough

Re-reading through notes is often not enough to cement information into your memory.

How to cram the night before a test

A way of encoding information more deeply is to write diagrammatic notes. Spider diagrams, mind maps and concept maps are visual stimuli and are more easily remembered than a list of points or blocks of text.

Condensing information down into single word cues can then efficiently trigger the recall of large amounts of information.

Hand writing revision notes can also help you learn information more deeply and helps you to get into the practice of writing rapidly in an exam setting.

Typing on a computer can also increase distraction, as the temptation to procrastinate can increase.

A lack of sleep can affect your performance

How to cram the night before a test

Last minute revision is synonymous with a poor night’s sleep, if any sleep at all.

The dilemma presented is that you can either stay up and study to commit as much information to memory as possible, or forfeit a night’s sleep.

Sleep, however, is essential in forming enduring memories – and a lack of sleep is shown to be self defeating in terms of memory recall.

Scientists still do not fully understand why sleep is so important for brain function, but it is known that sleep is important in the consolidation of memory.

This is the process of forming an enduring memory from short-term stores into long-term memory.

Your brain goes through different stages of sleep. The deepest stage of sleep is known as Slow Wave Sleep and this period is proposed to be vital in the consolidation of memories.

The hippocampus is essential in the consolidation of memories, in particular in forming episodic memories, which requires linking the features of a memory together.

Studies have revealed in mice that the neurons in the hippocampus activated during learning a maze became active again during Slow Wave Sleep. The reactivation of neurons is proposed to strengthen the new connections.

So a good night’s sleep after learning new information is essential to forming memories. It’s beneficial to get sleep rather than staying awake and going into an exam without rest.

Procrastination can pile on the pressure

How to cram the night before a test

Despite the deadline of exams to study for, mundane tasks suddenly become more appealing, like rearranging a bookshelf, or cleaning your desk, instead of revising for an exam.

The tasks we can occupy ourselves with when procrastinating are typically immediately rewarding but only have a short-term value.

The more important task of studying can lead to a bigger reward – passing the exam, however this reward is not immediate.

Humans tend to be motivated for small, immediate rewards. The value of passing a test certainly outweighs smaller, immediate rewards like playing video games; when the deadline approaches, the importance shifts. This usually leads to a long night of study before the exam.

It has been suggested procrastinators may be a certain personality type, in particular people who are thrill seekers.

Leaving an important task until the last minute increases adrenalin and stress hormones, and you can get a rewarding “rush” once its complete. The reinforces the idea that such people work better under pressure.

Familiar environment can prompt memory

Even if you arrive at the exam the morning after a long night of study, feeling sleep deprived and as if you haven’t learnt enough, all may not be lost.

Being in the exam hall at school, college or university can help you recall information. The familiar environment can increase performance as the stimuli around you can prompt memory.

For example, a science exam being taken in a science classroom can cue memories, these cues aren’t present in a strange environment such as taking an exam in a race course hall.

This is known as the environmental reinstatement effect, which occurs because the location you are in can act as a prompt for past memories.

Environmental cues can trigger memory recall, so something as simple as having your pencil case on your desk while studying and again during the exam could assist in prompting memories.

Table of Contents

Is it good to study the night before a test?

Research has shown that sleeping right after learning can benefit memory retention, as well as protect against interference from external events. With that in consideration, it’s clear that the key to effectively studying the night before an exam is a good night’s sleep.

How do you prepare for a test the night before?

Tips You Should Do the Night Before the Exam

  1. Eat a healthy meal:
  2. Set an alarm (or two):
  3. Don’t drink too much water:
  4. Get enough sleep:
  5. Review study notes:
  6. Don’t study too late:
  7. Work out:
  8. Prepare for the morning:

Is it good to study the day before a test?

The day before a test isn’t the day to do all your studying, but a little light review can be helpful. Otherwise, treat this day mostly as a day to relax. Get together your textbooks, notes, and other study materials and then find a quiet room to study in, such as your bedroom or the local library.

How do I relax before a test?

To help you stay calm and confident right before and during the test, perform relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, relaxing your muscles one at a time, or closing your eyes and imagining a positive outcome. Don’t forget to eat and drink.

How can I improve my test taking skills?

Test Taking Strategies

  1. Be prepared.
  2. Always arrive early and take a moment to relax.
  3. Listen attentively to last minute instructions given by the instructor.
  4. Do a memory dump.
  5. Read the test directions very carefully and watch for details.
  6. Plan how you will use the allotted time.
  7. Look for cues.
  8. Answer all the questions.

How do I stop worrying about exam results?

How to reduce anxiety while waiting for exam results

  1. Recognize that it’s happened and in the untouchable past.
  2. Stay mindful.
  3. Talk it out to bring it down to size.
  4. Take on activities that foster a sense of control.
  5. Stay occupied with comforting exercises.

What helps before a test?

9 Things To Do The Night Before A Test

  • Review your study notes.
  • Revise topics one by one.
  • Don’t study too late.
  • Eat a good meal.
  • Prepare for the morning.
  • Give your brain a break.
  • Get some exercise.
  • Set your alarm.

Is 5 hours enough sleep before an exam?

NO! The human body needs at least 8 hours of sleep to function well and correctly. If you sleep only for 3 hours a day, that can affect your studying skills and memorization, and even do more damage than help on that test day, when you’re too sleep-deprived to even read the words on your assignment.

How can I speed up my test?

8 Ways to Improve Your Speed on the SAT/ACT

  1. Use a dull pencil.
  2. Cross out incorrect answers.
  3. Circle answers first, then bubble in your scantron one test page at a time.
  4. Skip the hard stuff on a first pass.
  5. Locate line-specific questions before reading the passage.
  6. Practice, and time yourself by individual passages.

How do you relax before results day?

How to deal with results day stress

  1. Know the details. Perhaps the best place to start is with the day itself.
  2. Make a plan. One of the things that can help you manage your stress in the run-up to results day is to have a plan.
  3. Practice mindfulness.
  4. Exercise.
  5. Spend time with people.
  6. Talk about it.
  7. Don’t go alone.

How to study the night before a test?

You shouldn’t be tackling anything brand new the night before your test. Instead, review the study notes you have created during your study sessions over the past few days. Work your way through your study notes, covering topics one by one. Once you have revised a topic, take a minute to make sure you remember and understand the material.

What is the best time to study for an exam?

While some students will cram up till late in the night, that’s not an effective way to study a night before the exam. Studying until the eleventh hour might look like maximizing your study time.

How many days before a test should I review?

This is why it’s also useful to review for a few days before the test, not just the night before so you can spread out the material and review everything multiple times over of a few separate sessions.

Is it bad to study late at night for exams?

Don’t Study Until Too Late While some students will cram up till late in the night, that’s not an effective way to study a night before the exam. Studying until the eleventh hour might look like maximizing your study time. But, if you don’t give your brain time to rest, you won’t be able to remember all the information you read.

Updated on May 31, 2021 by Isaac

Do you know that memorising or cramming effectively a night before your exam can dramatically improve your academic performance? It does the magic and that’s exactly what I will teach you in this article –How To Cram.

I read to understand because I don’t know how to cram and pass. This was my confession when I got a bad result in three hundred level (300L) first semester. The result was bad in the sense that my GP dropped from first class.

I credited my performance to the fact that I didn’t have enough time for academics like I used to (Based on blogging, SEO, Programming, etc). However, the real issue was that I started reading close to the Examination and tried to understand everything in a very short while (which I wasn’t fast enough to do).

If I had understood the concept of cramming, I would have been able to read everything two nights to the exam and still outperform those who started reading earlier. Let’s see what cramming has to bring to the table.

What Cramming Is All About?

In education, cramming is the practice of working intensively to absorb large volumes of informational material in short amounts of time.

Since your grade in school is proportional to the volume of materials you consume, then the only way to learn a lot when the exams are already close is to cram and pour it out.

The difference between cramming and reading to understand is that you may not understand when you are cramming, however, you can understand what you crammed with time.

Cramming and memorising work hand in hand but you tend to easily forget what you cram. Cramming is a function of time….. That’s why it is best done when your exams are already close.

In summary, when your friend reads a night before the exam and still score higher than you who have been studying, then it is called CRAMMING.

Reasons Why You Should Cram?

Now that you understand what cramming is about, another question comes to mind. Are you encouraging me to cram?

Generally, I won’t encourage you to cram. But, when certain circumstances arise, you have no option but to cram.

I will list and explain the reasons why you should cram or memorise very fast….

  • Some examiners need you to cram.
  • The exams are already close and you still have a lot to cover.
  • The subject/course is just too difficult for you to understand.
  • The topic requires you to memorise.
  • When the test is german objective.
  • When your exam involves formulas.

Now, let me explain:

The Tutor Needs It: It is no news that many teachers score their students low when they don’t answer the question exactly how it was written in the book.

They will tell you “give me exactly what I taught you”. In this case, you have no other option but to cram and pour it out in the exam hall.

Your Examination Is At Hand: You just have to cram when it is already a day to your exam and you still got about 10 topics to cover.

The Course Is Difficult: There are courses that need not be understood. You just have to memorise them. Examples are the big terminologies in biology, heavy formulas in electromagnetism, etc.

The Subject Demands You Memorise: When it involves things like continents in the world, first 50 elements in the periodic table, the top 10 most played songs, the most beautiful cities and so on; you don’t need to understand.

All that is required is that you put them to memory. Besides, nobody would ask you to list the first 20 elements in your own words.

German Obj: These are courses that require you to cram the textbook and fill blank spaces exactly how it appeared in the required textbook. Filling something else will make you lose marks.

When It Has To Do With Formulas: When you are sure that you will never be asked to prove the formula, no need to learn how to derive it. In fact, deriving the formula before solving will waste your time.

What Next? How to cram. For some time now, I have been doing research on how to cram and still score very high in exams. Do you want to know how? Then continue reading……

How To Memorise Or Cram Effectively

Eat Brain Enhancing Food: Eat what would make you light and ready to assimilate.

Rest A Little: Don’t just rush into cramming after work or stress. Try to relax your brain a little.

Bring Out Your Materials And Have An Overview: Glance through the required topics and point out the relevant points that would be asked.

Use Past Questions: The Use of past questions will further aid you to pick out likely exam questions when doing an overview.

If questions are often repeated in the exam, then cram a few years of past questions.

Break The Cramming Process In Stages: Break your work into different cramming stages. Say things like, “After cramming this, I will cram that”

Read, Close And Write: When you have identified and broken down what you want to cram in points, read a point twice and close the note or pdf material you are studying….

Try to repeat exactly what you have read. If you are not able to repeat it or you are missing some points, go through it again and close your note. Continue this process until you have been able to repeat exactly what you have read.

If you are able to recall what you have read, then write it down in your note. Compare what you have written down to what is stated in the material.

Do this for all the points you have jotted down and you won’t have any problem trying to recall.

Set Cramming Interval: Set at least two minutes to rest your head after you have successfully crammed a point.

Don’t Read Something Else: To avoid mix up, don’t read anything not related to the subject you are cramming and don’t let anyone distract you.

Go Through: Go through what you have crammed immediately before entering the exam hall so that they will remain in your “random access memory”.

With the tips above and strong determination from you, cramming to pass will be very easy for you.

Waec and Jamb candidates will also find these tips helpful. I wish you the best!

About FlashIsaac

Students Advocate, Marketer And YouTuber. Learn More About Me

Comments

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ADAMS DE EQUATION says

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Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock….9 Tips to Survive the Night and Hours Before Your Exam

1) Relax

On the night before your exam, you know what you know and you don’t know what you don’t know. Many people feel cramming the night before we be productive; however, study after study shows that this is not the case. Rather, you should have already prepared for the exam prior to the night before. The earlier you start studying, the more comfortable you will feel with the material. Give yourself at least a week (or two) to review course material. Stop cramming at least two hours before the test, so you can focus on relaxing instead.

2) Take Study Breaks

Step away from your notes and books every now and then. If you were working out at the gym, you wouldn’t want to workout without a break between sets. Rather you would do multiple sets with short breaks in between. This is the same strategy you want to use when working out your mind. Find what relaxation tips you enjoy and take 10 to 15 minutes every now and then to allow your mind to rest. Doing so will allow you to focus your thoughts better, clear your head and get your juices running. Take regular breaks while studying by taking a short walk, listen to some music or surf the web for a few minutes.

3) Breathe deep and easily.

Deep breathing is a simple technique that allows you to quickly and easily reduce stress. Simply close your eyes, relax your body, think peaceful thoughts and breathe in slowly through your nose and exhale through your mouth. Repeat until you feel calm. This technique works well while you’re studying and has shown to be very helpful just before your actual exam.

4) Laugh out loud.

Laughing has many benefits to help you relax. Some of the short term benefits include stimulating may organs, activating and relieving your stress response and soothing tension. Additionally, laughter has been proven to provide long term benefits such as improving your immune system, relieving pain and increasing your personal satisfaction.

If you have a problem laughing out loud and alone, then maybe you could watch a sitcom, or go online and read some funny articles. Even simple things such as watching some videos on Youtube will almost guarantee a burst out loud. Instead of having a breakdown, let yourself laugh and find humor in any situation. This keeps anger, depression and anxiety from setting in and will only help you prepare for your exam.

5) Visualize yourself calm and in control during your exam.

Make yourself comfortable by sitting or lying down and take deep breaths. This is how most visualizations begin. After a little time has passed, close your eyes and spend a few moments the night before and in the last moments prior to an exam visualizing yourself relaxed and ready to work. Visualization techniques help reduce anxiety and prepare you for your exams.

6) Rest the night before an exam.

A good night’s sleep and a well rested body and mind, as opposed to fighting to stay awake during a test is a very simple technique you can employ. Most importantly, a well rested mind will allow you to comprehend and answer complex questions on the exam, so make sure you arrive at your exam well rested.

7) Arrive early to the testing site.

Double check the location and time of your exam the night before and determine when you need to leave your location to arrive at the site early. Feeling rushed before an exam will create unnecessary anxiety. This technique will also allow you some time to practice a few relaxation exercises.

8) Think of the Idiots

Everyone knows someone who passed the exam and just isn’t that smart. This other person didn’t have some secret knowledge or extra time that you didn’t have. They had the same tools and resources available that you’ve probably used as well and somehow they survived and passed the exam.

Before you start your exam, simply remind yourself that if your idiot friend can pass the exam then you won’t have any problems. However, when you finish, don’t let your friend know how they helped you get through the test. After all, you may need to use them as a relaxation method again.

9) Have fun.

We all seem to put so much pressure on ourselves when we take an exam like the SAT, ACT, GED, etc… We seem to feel that if we don’t perform above our ability then it will hinder our future.

The reality is an exam is just a way for you to show others how much you know and understand on certain topics. If you’ve prepared for your exam by utilizing this site and various other study resources then you’ve got plenty of information in your head. The exam will just extract that information and should be viewed as a way for you to brag about how much you know. Using these relaxation tips will help you perform to the best of your ability as you take your exam.

How to cram the night before a test

Good study habits are an important skill for every student.

However, when test time rolls around, so too does the habit of ‘cramming’. Whether it’s a busy schedule or procrastination, cramming is the last-minute studier’s go-to study method.

Does cramming for exams work?

The answer: No. In fact, this studying technique does more harm than good to a student’s education.

Many students dislike coming home to do homework. The idea of focusing an entire night (or longer) preparing for a test can be unappealing. Add this to students’ busy social schedules, countless distractions, and lack of organizational skills, and you have the perfect recipe for a ‘crammer’.

What is cramming?

Cramming usually happens when students put off studying until the last possible second. Students spend hours memorizing as much of the material as possible in a short period of time, like the night before the test. They may stay up all night, convinced that they’re working hard. This type of studying may become routine, or become the only way that a student knows how to study.

Does Cramming Work?

Cramming is one of the least effective ways to learn a subject. Research has found that many students cannot recall much information after a cram session. They have trained their mind to recite the material without developing a deeper understanding. This undermines the learning process. The student has wasted a learning opportunity by simply temporarily memorizing everything for a good grade.

Why Cramming Isn’t Effective

A big reason why cramming doesn’t work is that it dramatically increases a student’s stress levels. This stress has a negative effect on their ability to concentrate, making preparing for a test even more difficult.

Cramming also leads to students trading in sleep for more study time. Lack of sleep is a big factor in poor academic performance.

Cramming for tests is a short-term solution. The information students spend the night cramming is stored in the short-term memory where it is accessible in the short-term (like for a test the next day). However, it doesn’t create lasting neural connections to the material, or develop deep comprehension. Students might get a good grade on the test, but that knowledge will be forgotten quickly – usually as soon as the following days.

How To Study Without Cramming

What study techniques can students use to avoid cramming? A technique known as “spaced learning” is much more effective for short-term recall and long-term retention.

Spaced learning is when students review the material over a long period of time. This gives their minds time to form connections between the ideas and concepts. This knowledge can be built upon and easily recalled later.

Aside from reviewing material earlier and more often, there are a few other ways students can learn to study without cramming.

Avoid cramming and study more effectively by:

  1. Reading the material slowly

It’s useless to read as fast as possible just to hear the words echo in your head. Students should read slowly and deliberately and ask themselves if the material is truly being understood.

Taking good notes

Students should try writing out notes on the subject as if they were teaching it to someone else. This will help make sure they’re comprehending the material.

Getting a good night’s sleep

Students need more sleep, not less, so that their mind is healthy, focused, and sharp. Eight hours of sleep each night will help make sure students are well-rested and ready to learn.

Staying organized

Organizational skills are extremely important for effective learning. Getting a handle on them now can help students in a number of ways. They should know when tests are, what they’ll be covering, and plan around other assignments they also need to work on in the days leading up to the test.

  • Studying in shorter sessions
  • Review material in short sessions lasting 20 to 30 minutes. This will help improve concentration and recall of the material. Focus on one topic or section at a time over the course of days leading up to a test.

    Cramming Doesn’t Cut It

    Cramming may seem like an effective way for students to prepare for a test, but it only leads to more stress and disappointing performance. To get the most out of studying, the solution is constant, repeated exposure to the material, and a well-rested and healthy mind.

    How to cram the night before a test

    The NCLEX® exam is all that stands between you and your nursing degree. You’ve read, highlighted, notecarded and basically done everything you can to get all that knowledge in your head. Or at least, you hope you have. Because if there’s one thing our nurses have repeatedly told us, it’s that last-minute cramming the night before is not the way to go.

    We recently asked our community of nurses on Facebook how they spent the night before their NCLEX exam. While everyone has their own study methods, there’s no question that preparing beforehand is the smart choice. That way you can relax, get plenty of sleep and remind yourself that you’re going to nail it. And remember, you’re not alone. Hundreds of thousands of nurses were in your same position – and went on to become extraordinary healthcare professionals! Check out their suggestions below for how to spend the night before:

    1. Be Prepared.

    Not surprisingly, studying as much as possible beforehand is essential. Last-minute cramming just isn’t going to do it. Study in the weeks and months leading up to the exam so you can feel confident and spend the night before relaxing.

    “Do all the hard work and studying at least 48 hours before.” Ashley S.

    “No cramming! You remember very little when you do that.” Diann T.

    “If you have to – review notes while listening to relaxing music.” Lydia B.

    “Played the NCLEX board game. Then SLEPT!” – Sami P.

    “Double-check the directions to the testing center and then get a good night’s sleep.” – Kimberly S.

    2. Relax.

    Nerves are completely common and understandable. And while relaxing might sound like the opposite of what you’ll be able to do – try it. Take some deep breaths, listen to music and remember how much you’ve studied. Never underestimate the power of believing in yourself!

    “Relax and quit reviewing. You either know this stuff or you don’t.” Joan V.

    “Do some prayer and meditation to relax your mind and nerves.” – Karen W.

    “Relax and sleep well. If you don’t have it by now, you won’t have it tomorrow.” – Derek H.

    “Relax and have self-confidence.” – Lydia B.

    3. Eat a Good Meal.

    A good, nutritious meal can do wonders for the brain. Rather than munching on study snacks, take yourself out for a nice dinner and reflect on how far you’ve come. You’ve earned this.

    “Take yourself to a nice dinner and then sleep like a baby.” – Bria W.

    “Go for a nice, relaxing dinner with friends/classmates.” – Karen W.

    “Eat seafood! It’s brain-food!” – Alicia W.

    “Relax, go out to supper with some friends and go to bed early!” – Debra B.

    4. Sleep, sleep, sleep.

    As nursing students, you already know the importance of a good night’s sleep. Not surprisingly, this was our most popular suggestion. And while we’re only showing you a few comments – trust us that there were many.

    “Get a good night’s sleep – do not take any sleep aids.” – Karen W.

    “Get plenty of sleep and listen to classical music.” – Ashley S.

    “Spend the night relaxing with a good night’s sleep.” – Tina G.

    “Get plenty of sleep! Very important to be well rested.” – Lisa L.

    So, however you’ve studied, when it comes to the night before the exam – take some deep breaths, get a good night’s sleep and believe in yourself. Good luck and we’ll see you on the other side!

    Want more tips on how to prepare for the NCLEX? Read on:

    Organic Chemistry I Workbook For Dummies

    Studying for a chemistry test can be a real challenge, but it doesn’t have to be. You just need to know how to do it right. In reality, the process of studying starts long before you sit down the night before a test and try to figure out complex chemistry problems between energy drinks.

    If you think studying consists of looking over the study guide once, glancing at a few problems, and then texting your friends, you should really keep reading. The following list gives you quality guidelines for how to study for a chemistry test:

    Don’t cram. Studying a little bit at a time over the course of the entire unit is far and away the best plan for mastering the material and building your confidence in it. Chemistry is complex. It isn’t really something that’s meant to be consumed in mass quantities over a brief period of time.

    Taking the material that you learned in class each day and reviewing it at home for 15 to 20 minutes at night will pay huge dividends on test day. Yes, studying the night before the test is always a good part of the plan, but preparing far in advance will be more than worth it.

    Figure out exactlywhich concepts will be on the test. Before you begin studying, determine which concepts from the unit are going to be on the test. Go back and look over your notes from class and look at the study guide. Check out the textbook if you bothered to bring it home; it might help. See which topics overlap all of those. Determine which topics are the most discussed. Get together a list of topics that you think will be the focus of the test, and then study those.

    Allocate your study time wisely. Sadly, your time is limited. You can’t just pause the day and study chemistry for hours on end. Heck, you probably have other tests to study for, too. So with that in mind, after you figure out what will be on the test, study it.

    Most chemistry units have a ton of information in them, some of it far more important than others. Unless you’re quite lucky, you probably aren’t going to master every topic in the unit. Spend the bulk of your time on the stuff you know will be on the test. Don’t get sidetracked for an hour trying to understand one rather obscure concept that probably has little bearing on your success or failure on the test.

    Don’t worry about the exceptions until you know the basics. In chemistry, it sure seems like every time a rule or a theory is laid out, you run across exceptions. Electron configurations are nice and simple, except for the compounds needing only two electrons instead of eight for a full valence shell. Lewis dot structures are easy to draw, except for that entire bit about expanded and unfilled octets. You get the idea.

    Many times, students freak themselves out worrying about these exceptions without truly grasping the base concept. If the exceptions are going to be on the test, they’ll be a very minor portion. Besides, those exceptions won’t matter if you don’t understand the base concept in the first place.

    Do example problems. This is perhaps the most important piece of advice in this list. Just looking at your notes and following along with a problem won’t help you learn. You must do your practice problems. Chemistry is problem-solving, which is a skill you need to learn by doing. It isn’t something you can pick up by simply watching a teacher do it or by reading a textbook.

    Be confident. Confidence is a key to being successful in all things in life. School and tests — especially chemistry tests — are no different. When you study, start with the easier material and then work your way up to the more challenging stuff. Do the first couple of practice problems in your textbook’s chapter review or on the study guide. The first problems are easier. This way, you build confidence in yourself and the material as you go. Don’t try the last problem in your chapter review, which is probably the hardest problem ever conceived by man, until you’re ready for it.

    Don’t ignore the math and everything that goes with it. If you haven’t realized it yet, chemistry is basically a math class with lots and lots of fun stuff thrown in to make it even harder. When you’re getting ready for your test, make sure your calculator is ready to go. Know how it works, which buttons to push, and so on. Not all calculators are the same, so if you’re planning on using one the teacher provides, be familiar with it.

    Don’t just know how to plug stuff into your calculator; know how to write the calculations on your paper, too (with units). You’ll likely need to show your work.

    Know what resources you’ll have available for the test. Ask your teacher what you can use on the test. Will you be given a periodic table to use? (Almost always yes.) Will the formulas you need be available? (Entirely depends on class level and teacher.) Will you be given an ion chart telling you what all the polyatomic ions are? (Depends.) Figure out what you’ll have available so you don’t waste time memorizing things that will be given to you.

    Sleep and eat. There’s no point to staying up until 3:00 in the morning the day of the test to study that one hard problem you’ve already looked at it four times. All you’re doing at that point is lowering your chances of doing well on the test. If you’re incoherent because you got only 2 or 3 hours of sleep, no amount of caffeine is going to make up for that when it comes to performing on the test. Getting enough sleep helps a great deal on tests.

    Also, eat breakfast if the test is in the morning, and eat lunch if the test is in the afternoon. If you eat, your mind and body can focus more on taking the test than worrying about being hungry or needing energy.

    Don’t get discouraged when you take the test. Tests are intimidating, and they’re usually hard. Keeping a positive attitude while taking the test is important. Mark problems that you don’t understand and then come back to them when you’re done with the ones you do understand. Nothing is worse than spending 10 of the 50 minutes you get for your test on one problem that you have no idea how to do. Be aware of your time, and stay positive.

    how to study for a math test the night before

    When exams are ahead then the routine of testing happen on daily . How to study for a math test the night before become common wording of every student .
    It has been seen that many students couldn’t get good grade as they are not aware of study techniques . And many ordinary students beat good student in result by true use of these study techniques .
    Some students prepare a test by using the techniques and adopt the study habit of some useful techniques.

    If you have a great practice for the math test then you can easily prepare for a test the night before.
    If you haven’t a good practice then don’t worry, I have tried to cover every point in this article .

    I found some useful ways that will be helpful for the preparation of ‘how to study for a math test the night before’. So follow these study goals tips and become successful.

    1. Care about each moment

    Now, time is everything for you. Each second and minute decides what are you gaining.
    Time is worthy, once it have passed never come back. So make use of every minute by preparing the math test.

    If you spend hours in eating food, watching TV or using mobile then it could become difficult for preparation of the test. So do a good use of your time .

    2. Sorting of material

    Don’t prepare the whole book or notes. Only select that material you are familiar.

    In this way you will understand the topics effectively and bring increase in your interest .

    If you will continuously preparing the whole book then this will make you bored, less acknowledgement and also wastage of time .
    So sort out the important notes and material prepare these for good result.

    3. Study area

    Be sure your study area is well cleaned and far from distractions .
    Clean area will make you pleasant and create a good environment for learning.

    Distractions are harmful for effective study. As you have to study for a math test and you have one night that mean you have shortage of time. Distractions lead you to wasting of both time and energy .

    As distracted mind use more energy to concentrate on the specific point and this required time .

    4. Well relaxed

    Three things make you relax.
    1 – Sleep
    2 – Entertainment
    3 – Fun

    When you worried and have tensions about something then you have to get relax . This makes your mind to work with great efficiency.
    Your fresh mind makes you to prepare formulas and equations in math test. So I would suggest you to have a well sleep before preparing your math test.

    5. Study with friends

    It is highly recommended that study in form of group . In the group everyone have the own way of thoughts, so the number of ideas could be revealed when discussed in a group.
    One can give own suggestion and can get several ideas on a specific point. So preparing a math test you can discuss formulas , equations , symbols and number of problems you faced .

    Hence , invite all of your friends to a specific place and took all subjects material. Sit down and make an environment of learning. How to Study for math test the night before will become an easier solution.

    6. Make use of lapses

    Use of lapses during your study is important for your focus . Lapses increase your concentration and remembering power.

    Our body and brain maintain their efficiency of work when by use of lapses .

    These lapses should not long. After studying 40 minutes a lapse of five minutes necessary.

    By studying for test 2 or 3 hours continuously make you bored and your concentration has lost.

    7. Review often

    Reading and solving the questions doesn’t mean that these are copied in your mind .

    You have to review every question again after completing one section . It better for you as many times you practice a question as it got fix to your mind .

    Review often mean to revise things you have recently completed and make full grip on these.

    8. To eat whiles study

    Reading and practicing the questions to hours make you hungry. If you will not eat anything then this will make you unable to study.
    So during the preparation of the test, you have to eat light food repeatedly.
    If you eat too much at a time this effect is negatively.
    Eat lightly and repeatedly will make your task carry on.

    9. Make shorter notes

    As you are preparing a math test then you have to practice questions. If you are not practicing , you must practice the important questions by making shorter notes . These notes are useful for last review before going to test .

    These practiced questions are your shorter notes which need few minutes for the last review.
    Make sure you practiced all important questions, equations and formulas , and have a look for last time .

    10. Take a sleep

    11. Solve whole Questions (during the test)

    In test, read the questions carefully. Start from those questions you can solve easily.
    Do not leave blank any necessary question. Even if you know single line, write it with extra words and try to cover as much as you can.

    12. Be positive

    I hope you have to do a good test if not do not lose heart. Make a potential and try to work hard for the next test. You have abilities to do everything so a little portion of a book or syllabus is nothing.

    You can change the way of studying by doing things in time, and there will be not a single night to prepare for a math test.

    Are you taking the SAT® soon and trying to figure out what to do with your final hours, minutes, or whatever time you have left to prep? This blog is for those who have done some form prep so far (even if it is just a few days or weeks). Here are four tips on what you should be doing the night before your SAT® exam.

    But first – Should I study the night before the SAT®?

    Contrary to what some believe about going into a big test relaxed and free-of-mind of possible, yes you should study the night before. We don’t mean you should study for 20+ hours or stay up all night, but you should review topics you now you need to brush up on. Make sure to get plenty of sleep and be well-fed so that you feel 100 percent going in.

    Tip – 1 Come up with a pacing strategy

    The best way to guard against the issues that can tank you after having a lot of prep is coming up with a pacing strategy. Decide what you’re going to do if certain things happen before taking the test. Confront things that freak you out and try not to get stuck in that vortex of wasting valuable test time. Our advice is to spend no more than 60-120 seconds on a question and then move on. Commit to your plan and be okay with that, students usually have time at the end of their exams and that is where you can go back and have another go at these questions. Remember that different sections have different time allotments:

    Reading: 65 minutes for 52 questions

    Writing & Language: 35 minutes for 44 questions

    Math – No Calculator: 25 minutes for 20 questions

    Math – With Calculator: 55 minutes for 38 questions

    These sections start with the easier questions then get more difficult as you progress so be aware and manage your time wisely.

    Tip 2 – Go over mistakes from previous tests

    While revising your practice exams ask yourself:

    “What was the mistake I made?”

    “How can I avoid that mistake?”

    “Why did I make that mistake?”

    Recognize your mistakes and familiarize yourself with where you went wrong so you don’t fall in the same pattern of mistakes again.

    Tip 3 – Try to rework old problems you got wrong

    Make the most of your time and look over areas you don’t feel confident in so you can try and study up before the test. You will know the answer but will gain the comfort of working through and dissecting a problem that gave you trouble. Remind yourself of the pathways of problem solving that are similar to the ones you are going to be engaging on the exam.

    Tip 4 -Review concepts you have trouble with

    Go over formulas or any grammar rules you have trouble with so that you’re all covered the day of the exam. Because this test is full of topics you can actually study for, use your time before test day to choose these topics you’re still unsure about. Review, but don’t exhaust yourself. Get a good night’s sleep and be sure to eat. Good luck tomorrow or whenever you have your test.

    How To Study Last Minute For Exams

    For those who never open books whole year and get stressful when exams are near for them we are today to discuss on How to Study Last Minute for Exams. This is the main topic for those who want to know effective tips & tricks that are useful in last time preparation.

    So, let’s start with some beneficial points that actually help in last minute preparation of exams. Exam is the time when every student faces too much stress, but if you really want to crack exams then go well with this entire page and get How to Study at the Last Minute for Exams?

    As steps provided below can be beneficial for the students… We are here to let you know some powerful tips and tricks about how you can study well before the last minute of exam. Following points are prepared by the expert team members of www.goldeneraeducation.in so, you just go ahead and read out theses powerful points and implement them in your study.

    How To Study Last Minute For Exams

    When you get to know that exams dates are near then time runs faster than you and you get confused and start searching how to study last minute for exams. In this regard, to help students from this situation we have provided some effective methods, Tips & Tricks that must be followed before the exam. So, let’s go through below mentioned points and learn How to Study at the Last Minute.

    Creating a Last-Minute Study Plan

    • Prepare last minute study plan in which you must revise your notes.
    • Focus on your weak points or topics then occur while studying.
    • You can also study quickly and efficiently by making a mind map, which is a study tool to help you remember the connections and links between certain concepts or terms.
    • You can also use a tried and true study tool, flashcards, to create an efficient, last minute study session.

    Read Here: How To Make A Study Plan For Exam

    Staying Focused While Studying

    • Though you are studying last minute and may be trying to cram as much information in your brain as you can, you should still try to take short study breaks.
    • You should try to only drink water while you are studying, as this will ensure you stay hydrated and healthy.
    • You should also try to have healthy, energizing snacks while you study so you can stay focused and not become too wired or too lethargic.
    • To study effectively at the last minute, you should create a distraction free zone in your room

    One Hour Is Enough

    • Its better if you’ve few hours for study before exam but if you have at least one hour, and then it is enough for this final study.
    • You can review your notes in this period of time.
    • Be hurry but never keep your mind in hurry.
    • Be calm and relaxed while revising.

    Avoid to Study Too Much

    • You don’t need to read the entire chapter, just read the summaries, because you don’t have much time.
    • But it doesn’t mean that you get stressed, be cool and think all is well.
    • Maintain you speed of revision to complete it in one hour.

    Prioritize Weak Subjects

    • You have to aim to revise everything but give your more time on things you don’t understand.
    • Because when we revise and attempt the tough things, our concentration level increases.
    • That’s why you should give weak subjects most focus.

    Discuss What You’ve Read

    • After going through the summaries of chapters, discuss with your friend what you have studied.
    • It will help you to remember the most important portions of all the chapters for exam.

    Preparing the Night Before the Exam

    • You should prepare some last minute review notes that focus on key concepts and terms that you struggle with.
    • You should do some preparations the night before the exam so you are less stressed in the morning and can head into your exam with a clear head.
    • Many studies have shown that getting a full night’s sleep before an exam can help you perform better.

    Friends and Family to Encourage You

    • Tell and discuss your plans and strategies of your preparation to your friends and family members.
    • Ask them about any kind of lack in your preparation strategy.
    • It’s not only you to encourage yourself, ask your friends and family to help you.

    Quality time

    • Ask friends over for a revision session.
    • If someone else is testing you then it’s always better, with things like learning and practicing dates and vocabulary.

    Make It a Point

    • Note-down important points from the topics you’re studying, this will let you remember all.
    • When you are prepared already and have much less time, then just focus on some main points.
    • Read these points carefully 3 to 5 times, so it will stay in your mind and can be asked in the exam.

    Revise and Test Yourself

    • If you have some time left you can quickly revise what you studied.
    • You can use every second left before the exam.
    • Remember that you’ve studied well and it’s just a quick revision so, be cool and calm.

    Previous Year Questions

    • Try to solve previous year question, you can get it from the market and also available online.
    • It can be possible that you face some questions in the exam from previous year.

    Guys! Be calm, just always try harder to do your best and remember that you’ve had more opportunities, and support than anyone in your family’s history…. Good Luck. Join us on Facebook or Google + to get latest and instant updates.

    There is no doubt about it — exams can be stressful. The night before the exam can be especially hard as you try to fall asleep and may worry about whether you have prepared enough or if you could have done more. In having such thoughts, you are only stressing yourself out more than necessary. Instead, you can choose to follow some of these best practices the night before an exam so that you can remain calm, wake up feeling refreshed, and enter the test ready to do well.

    Before we get to some best practices, let’s talk about what you can do well before the night before an exam in order to be ready. You’ll want to be proactive in all your endeavors and plans to study in advance. This means being able to manage your time effectively, as it will help you feel more confident on the big day.

    When you are taking any course, you should outline the deadlines and test dates in the beginning and work backwards with material to break it down into smaller chunks and learn along the way, rather than cramming around the test time. When you feel like you can own the material, then you will have no reason to stress the night before an exam.

    Regardless of the steps you take to study in advance, here are a few tips and tricks to try around exam time, and specifically, the night before the exam.

    How to cram the night before a test

    Photo by Alex Samuels on Unsplash

    Tips You Should Do the Night Before the Exam

    1. Eat a healthy meal:

    You should always eat as healthily as possible, but this is especially true the evening before a big test and in the day of a test. You will want to eat a balanced meal with some carbohydrates for energy, protein for brainpower and a small amount of natural sugars. Having too much sugar the night before an exam could keep you awake, and if you have high amounts of sugar before an exam, you may feel the crash during the test or it will be hard to focus.

    2. Set an alarm (or two):

    The worst thing you can do is miss the test! In order to avoid this, be sure to set your alarm the night before. Rather than hitting snooze consistently, set an extra alarm for a few minutes later so that if you happen to miss the first, you have a backup ready to go off and wake you.

    3. Don’t drink too much water:

    While it’s always important to stay hydrated, you will want to avoid drinking too much water the night before an exam as having a full bladder could wake you up during the night to use the bathroom. Sleep is really important before an exam, so you don’t want any interruptions.

    4. Get enough sleep:

    Sleeping helps your brain both process and retain information. It will also have you ready to go with energy the next day, so aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep before exam day.

    5. Review study notes:

    If you’ve been studying all along in bits and pieces during the course, you will feel better prepared for the test. However, it’s always a good idea to review study notes the day before an exam to refresh your memory.

    6. Don’t study too late:

    Going hand in hand with getting good sleep, don’t pressure yourself to stay up all night to study. Studying late may burn you out and make you more anxious, so set a good cut-off time so that you have time for a healthy dinner with some time to wind down and relax before bed.

    7. Work out:

    Working out increases your endorphins and helps to reduce stress levels. It’s always a good idea to do some form of physical activity that you enjoy. Whether that means going for a run, taking a short walk, practicing yoga or taking a group exercise class, getting in physical activity will positively affect both your physical and mental health, and also likely help you sleep better throughout the night.

    8. Prepare for the morning:

    When you wake up on your exam day, you don’t want to have to worry about anything. That’s why it’s a good idea to prepare the night before. This can include packing a snack, preparing breakfast in advance (overnight oats are always a good idea), and even laying out your clothes. You can also make sure your bag is packed with any tools you need (such as calculators, pens, pencils, etc.) so that when you wake up, you’re ready to go!

    9. Visualize positive outcomes:

    Visualization techniques are powerful tools to help envision an outcome before it happens and manifest positivity. From athletes to politicians and more, many successful people use this mental tool to create their reality, and as a student, you can, too. Visualizing positive results can help you achieve your goals and stay calm. By seeing yourself taking the test and doing well before it happens, you can help to transform your beliefs into reality.

    10. Relax:

    While it may sound easier said than done, you want to be relaxed before an exam. In a relaxed state of mind, you can think more clearly, access your memory, and be best prepared for an exam. In order to relax the night before or the day of an exam, try some of the following: exercise, meditate, do yoga, lessen caffeine intake, decrease sugar consumption, burn a candle, listen to music, go for a walk, etc. Everyone finds different ways to relax, so be sure to do whatever works best for you.

    Things to Remember

    In order to be prepared for exam day, write yourself a checklist of things to remember. This could include:

    • Pens
    • Pencil
    • Paper
    • Scantron or testing booklet (if required)
    • Eraser
    • Calculator (if allowed)
    • Cheat sheet (if allowed)

    Other useful items to pack for before and after an exam include:

    • Phone
    • Wallet
    • Keys
    • Water
    • Healthy snack

    Again, try to have everything prepared the night before so that when it comes time for exam day, you are not worried about trivial matters.

    How to cram the night before a test

    Photo by Max van den Oetelaar on Unsplash

    The Bottom Line

    It’s important to remember that exams are not meant to scare or intimidate you. Rather, they are designed to test your knowledge of material that you have already been taught, so it’s best to stay up-to-date in classes and manage your time wisely so that you always feel prepared. Everyone has different study techniques and useful resources, but when you find your methods, you can stick to them and be successful!

    How to cram the night before a test

    LVN Program in Los Angeles

    As a nursing student, you’ll need to take your NCLEX exam before you can officially become a licensed vocational nurse. If it seems it is the most important test you have ever had to take, you might be right. Taking this test is important for testing your knowledge on what you’ve learned in your nursing courses. However, when it’s time to take the test, some students find themselves feeling stressed, especially the day before. Here are some of the best ways to prepare before a test.

    Don’t Cram!

    Don’t get caught in the trap of trying to cram the night before a test. You should begin to prepare before a test as soon as you know you have a test coming up. The day before your test should be spent reviewing your notes. Cramming the day before a test is never a good idea because you should be studying gradually all along, especially for the NCLEX.

    Know Where You’re Taking the Test

    Make sure you know where you’ll be taking the test and know how long it will take you to get there. A good idea to prepare for a test is to leave yourself plenty of time to arrive at the test site so that you aren’t stressed worrying about being late. You’ll want to dress comfortably. If it’s hot outside, remember that you might be chilly in an air-conditioned environment. Plan to bring a sweater or jacket so that you aren’t distracted if you’re cold while taking the exam. Know what is required of you to bring to your test. These can often include a pen, pencil, or even a governement issued ID when it’s time for your NCLEX.

    Get a Good Night’s Sleep

    It helps to get a good night’s sleep the night before taking a test at school or sitting for your NCLEX. But if you’re nervous, it’s understandable if you have trouble sleeping. That’s why it’s a good idea to try and sleep well a few nights before you test also. When you wake up the morning of the test make sure you eat a healthy breakfast. It’s hard to concentrate if you’re hungry or running low on energy.

    If you have any questions about taking a test, make sure to speak to your instructors.

    1. Know exactly where the testing center is, how to get there, and at what time you need to be there. If you need to, drive the route in advance with your parents.

    Don’t figure this out the morning of the test. Know it as far in advance as possible. Make sure you have a full tank of gas and directions to the testing center. Make sure you know EXACTLY what time you need to be there at, and double check the location.

    2. Set every single alarm in your house. Yours, your parents’, the one on your microwave – every alarm. You don’t want to wake up late tomorrow – the stress factor of doing so will be out of control. By setting all your alarms (and knowing that your parents have set theirs), you’ll also be able to sleep more soundly. There’s research showing that your brain maintains partial alertness on the night before a big task, which equals lower-quality sleep, but that this alertness is diminished by setting additional alarms. It’s like your brain knows that you’ll definitely wake up, so it takes the night off.

    3. Make sure you have everything you need for test day. These items include:

    -Multiple sharpened or mechanical #2 pencils
    -Calculator
    -Extra batteries for the calculator
    -Photo ID
    -Printed testing ticket
    -A watch!

    -”Test Tear Outs” – Tomorrow morning, before you take your test, I want you to “warm your brain up” by solving a few problems in all sections before you go into your test (further explanation coming up). You’ll need a math section, a Writing/English section, a reading section, and a science section (if you’re an ACT student) that you’ve already completed and reviewed. Tear them out of your book and have them ready.

    -My key strategy, tactic, and process checklists for all the sections of your test (including the essay). You’ll want to read all of these before you take your test to prime your brain and remind yourself of all the key strategies. If you want to get your hands on these checklists, make sure to check out my online prep system, Green Test Prep.

    -Snacks. Best are a bottle of water, some almonds, a granola bar, and a banana. Not all testing centers let you bring snacks in, but you can run and grab them during breaks.

    -All clothes laid out the night before. These clothes should be multi-layered and comfy. You never know if the room is going to be too hot or too cold.
    -Headphones. You’ll be listening to 60bpm music before you take your test. Make sure you have the proper playlist ready and everything set to go.

    -Chewing gum. Chewing gum increases your mental alertness for 20 minutes after you start chewing it. Use it during your toughest sections to get an extra boost.

    Don’t do this 5 minutes before you go to bed. Have it all set up before you eat dinner and you’ll be far less stressed.

    4. Carbo-Load at dinner. Marathon runners eat ludicrous amounts of carbohydrates the day before their races so that their bloodstreams are packed with glycogen (your body’s main fuel source). You should do the same for your brain. Your brain burns 20% of all your body’s calories, and thinking hard for hours at a time is incredibly energy intensive. The day before your test, you should aim to eat a massive dinner composed of complex carbohydrates.

    Whole grain pastas, breads, and cereals, combined with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, will fill you up with all the energy you need.

    Also remember to eat some healthy proteins and fats at dinner. Your pre-test meal should be epic.

    5. Hydrate. You don’t want to have to pee throughout your whole exam, but you need to be hydrated to think properly. To deal with that paradox, you should spend today drinking ludicrous amounts of water. Stop drinking about 2 hours before you go to sleep (you don’t want to wake up in the middle of the night), but aim for at least a gallon of fresh water today. If you saturate your body, your mind will function much more effectively tomorrow.

    6. Get in bed early – even earlier than you’ve been getting in bed this whole week. If you’ve been getting in bed every night at 10pm, try getting in bed tonight at 9pm. Tonight, it’s best to give yourself some extra time to fall asleep. Put on a relaxing playlist (60bpm music is best, but any relaxing music will do, read a stupid magazine or novel, and lull yourself into a coma.

    WHAT IF I CAN’T FALL ASLEEP?

    If you can’t fall asleep, I have three tricks that work incredibly well. Combining these will make you pass out like a sack of bricks.

    #1: Use the cold shower trick. The idea behind this trick is simple: get in the shower, turn it as cold as it can possibly go, and stand under she stream for 1-3 minutes. It’s painful and wretched, but it slows down your body’s metabolism and puts you in a “shutdown” mode. I know that most people think of a “long, hot bath” as the best way to relax, but in fact, heat actually prevents you from falling asleep. If you want to pass out like a champion, this is the way to do it. Jump in the cold shower, stand it for as long as you can, towel off, and jump in bed. You will PASS out.

    #2: Make sure your room is as cold, quiet, and dark as possible. Sleeping in high temperatures is difficult. Blast your AC, or at least keep your windows open (if you don’t live in the city) to get some circulation. Hot room = bad sleep.

    Also, make sure to completely cut your room off from light. Turn off all the lights, light-emitting electronics or devices with lit buttons, and shut off all computer monitors. Ideally, your room will be PITCH BLACK.

    Finally, be sure to limit noise. If you want to listen to either a relaxing playlist (set to turn off about 45 minutes after it begins) or 30 minutes of 60bpm baroque music, that’s fine. But limit distracting and irregular noise around your house. No TV. No vacuuming. No loud phone calls. No stomping around. Tell everyone in the house that tonight is the night of tomblike silence. No exceptions.

    #3: Limit your access to monitors and screens for 2-3 hours before bedtime. A lot of recent studies have shown that brightly-lit monitors and screens (your phone, computer, iPad, and TV) confuse your brain and make you think that it’s still light outside. As a result, when you look at bright screens, it becomes very difficult to fall asleep for a few hours afterward (if you’re wondering why you fall asleep watching the TV, it’s because the TV makes you use so little of your brain that you’re already in a sleep-like state. In fact, you use less of your brain watching TV than you do when you’re sleeping!).

    Two hours before bedtime, make sure all monitors, TVs, phones, etc. are off. It’s time to eat dinner, read stupid magazines, take a shower, listen to music, and pass out.

    One more note: do NOT take any drugs to help you fall asleep. You’ll wake up groggy and out of it – not a good idea before a huge test. If you do take pills or sleep medication routinely, then continue on this course, but otherwise, avoid sleep medication (over-the-counter and prescription) like the plague.

    If you follow all the advice above, you’ll be priming yourself for an absolutely incredible night of sleep in a positive state of mind. You’ll wake up tomorrow feeling fresh, happy, and ready to rock (as it should be). Just be sure to finish this guide before you go to bed and make all the necessary preparations for tomorrow. The things you do leading up to the test are the final pieces in your SAT and ACT puzzle, so you might as well put them together perfectly!
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    15 Best Ways to Relax Before an Exam

    Exams are always stressful, whether you have studied the whole year round, or have just opened the textbook the night before. No wonder so many people are looking for ways to know how to relax before an exam!

    Relaxing before an exam could be a tricky business; but if you know the appropriate methods, it would be easy for you to spend some comforting time before you have to sit for your exam. Spending some calming hours rather than some nervous hours before the exam could prove to be extremely important for you; it is therefore important that you learn how to relax before an exam.

    How to cram the night before a test

    15 Best Ways to Relax Before an Exam

    Don’t Cram the Night Before the Exam

    Many students begin their study the night before the exam, or at least start a new chapter the night before. This is actually one of the worst mistakes you can make if you want to learn how to relax before an exam. Studying should be taken lightly before an exam, if at all.

    Think Positive

    Always keep your thoughts positive, that’s an important tip on how to relax before an exam. Even if you are not very prepared for the examination, you should be positive about the outcome. Keep thinking optimistic and encouraging thoughts about the exam, and you will automatically feel better.

    Don’t Fear Failure

    Don’t be too afraid of failing; it will make you feel less confident than you are. Take your failure as an adventure, or rather just a bump in the road. Don’t be too afraid of what changes a bad exam would mean to you, because doing so will make you even more scared than you are.

    Don’t Make This Test Everything

    Remind yourself that this is just a test, although an important one, and not everything in your life is dependent on it. The more pressure you put on yourself, the more nervous you are going to be. If you want to know how to relax before an exam, tell yourself that this exam “is not everything”.

    Try Some Chocolates

    Yes, you heard it right! Try some chocolates because they will help you relax to a great extent. Not only because chocolates are everyone’s favorite treat, but also because a small bar of chocolate – especially dark chocolate – can regulate the secretion of cortisol, which is the hormone responsible for creating stress in the body.

    Chew Some Gum

    Don’t worry if it is not a healthy habit; chewing some fruit flavored gum can also regulate your stress hormone level and help you feel relaxed. Try this technique on your way to your exam for the best results!

    Take a Nap

    If you are not comfortable with a full night’s sleep, try taking a brief nap instead, for an hour or two. A power nap is what you need sometimes to feel relaxed before an examination is due; especially if you are studying the night before an exam, take a few hours out of your schedule and take a nap.

    Count from 10 to 1

    This technique is not only for reducing your anger; it can be an aid in relaxing as well. This is actually a focusing exercise where you can control your mind to keep it busy, so you won’t have to freak out and worry about the exam.

    Imagine Something Wonderful

    Close your eyes and try to imagine something wonderful – you’re going on an all-expense-paid vacation to the Bahamas for two weeks, your book just got published, the guy/girl of your dreams just asked you out on a date. Even if it’s just wistful thinking, it will help you feel good and relaxed for a few minutes.

    Try Some Green Tea

    Even if you haven’t made this healthy choice before, this is the perfect time to try sipping some green tea. The taste might be bitter, but green tea has a wonderful effect on reducing your stress and tension. Also, it is much better than drinking multiple cups of coffee that will surely make you jittery.

    Meditate

    Meditation should be a part of your everyday life, but most importantly, before your exams. You don’t need to take a course to know how to meditate; just try to relax your body and regulate your breathing, keeping your eyes closed. Take a few deep breaths and focus completely on achieving inner peace, and you can slowly feel yourself relaxing.

    Give Yourself a Massage

    Sometimes, a soothing massage is what you need! If there’s no one to give you a massage or a foot rub, do it yourself. Take some soothing and cooling lotion – lavender or Aloe Vera – and rub on your hands. You can massage your head, forehead, scalp or foot until your body relaxes under the pressure from your touch and the lotion.

    Squeeze on a Stress Ball

    Stress balls can work wonders when you want to relax before an exam. Squeezing on stress balls can help you relieve stress by giving your hands something to do, and your mind can focus on something physical happening on your body.

    Socialize

    If you feel the need to study immediately before an exam, take this time to socialize with friends. Remember to keep your socializing to a limit though; you wouldn’t want to wake up on the morning of the exam with a hangover and cannot remember anything that happened the night before!

    Go out into the Nature

    Try and spend some time in nature if you want to relax; take an hour out of your study schedule and take a walk. Take the scenic route while going to sit for the exam so that you feel relaxed and refreshed. Nature – the trees, the birds and the flowers – can help you feel stress-free.

    Updated March 23, 2021 Updated March 23, 2021

    How to cram the night before a test

    How to cram the night before a test

    We’ve all done it: either completely forgotten that you have an exam or procrastinating so much that you find yourself in a massive rush to learn all the new information before your exam the next day. When this happens, cramming for exams often really does seem like the only logical step…

    When I was at university, my housemate, Jess, always crammed for her exams. The day before her exam she used to revise all day, and then go to sleep at 7pm, just so that could get up at 2am on the day of the exam and revise until the very last minute. This made her exhausted, but Jess always did very well in exams. Was this down to her cramming technique? Could there be method in her madness?

    Read on as we attempt to answer the age-old question asked by all students putting off revision – does cramming for exams ever actually work?!

    Why it might work (as a very last resort)

    Cramming just before an exam can (in theory) allow you to remember information in the short term and enable you to take in enough information for the exam.

    However, this may will most likely mean that you’ll have no lasting connections to the knowledge, and you won’t develop any deep understanding of the information. You’ll also likely forget it the second you walk out of the exam.

    Why it might not work…

    There are many reasons not to cram last minute for an exam, which we’re sure you have no desire to hear, but here you go anyway…

    Cramming is essentially trying to stuff a load of information into your short-term memory in time for an upcoming exam. This has been proven to increase stress levels, and can lead to panic and anxiety, making it a lot harder to take in information. If you’re feeling the stress, find out how not to cope with it here!

    Cramming for exams also usually results in reduced sleep time. This is because students (like my friend Jess) either go to sleep or wake up in the early hours of the morning in order to maximize their last-minute revision time. This can often lead to poor academic performance, due to a decease in concentration.

    It’s also a massive risk. If you feel stressed and for some reason can’t take in the information that day, you may not perform to the best of your ability in the exam.

    But if you’re going to cram, do it right!

    So, what should you do if you’ve left your revision until the very last minute?

    If you’re going to cram for your exams, cram but cram effectively. Reading the textbook until you fall asleep at your desk from sheer exhaustion is probably not the best way to prepare for an exam.

    Make a list of what you have to learn before the exam. It’s important to be realistic about this – if you’ve left the revision until very last minute (e.g. the night before) it’s probably too late to learn absolutely all of the information. You’re best to prioritize and revise the most important topics properly, rather than trying to do too much and then getting yourself hyped up.

    Reviewing past paper questions is probably the best thing you can do to learn information last minute. Speaking from personal experience, information I’ve learnt in past papers has always cropped up somewhere in my exams at uni, and it’s a great way to learn a lot in a short period of time. Your university will usually give you access to past papers (and sometimes answers) online, and they can be a great source of revision, as well as making you feel a lot calmer about the layout of the paper.

    Get enough sleep! Lack of sleep can make you irritable, unable to concentrate and unable to make decisions. Not sleeping enough can also affect both your physical and mental health. If you’ve been revising all day and are absolutely exhausted anyway, staying up a few extra hours is not going to drastically improve your grade. Sleeping has been scientifically proven to improve your procedural memory (which helps with skills and procedures) and declarative memory (which helps recall facts).

    Sharing is caring!

    When it comes time to study for an exam, most college students are huge procrastinators and will try to cram the night before the exam. But that isn’t what you should be doing, which we all know that even though we keep trying to cram everything. The night before an exam is the perfect time to calm down your nerves, get a ton of rest, and the time to do things that work for you.

    Here are some things that you can do the night before an exam:

    Go to bed early to get enough sleep

    It may seem worth it to just stay up and study as much of the material that you can, but in the long run, you won’t actually remember much of what you learned. When you sleep, your body naturally moves the information from the day into short-term memory and long-term memory. So, when you stay up all night, your body doesn’t get the chance to store the information for later so you’re less likely to remember for the test.

    Eat a good breakfast in the morning full of proteins

    Your brain needs proteins and other healthy material to be able to function on a day-to-day basis so don’t skip out on a meal before your test. Your brain needs the energy to work hard.

    Alternate different studying spots

    Studying in different locations and with different people can immensely improve your studying ability. You’re less likely to become bored or distracted when you study in different places. I typically like to study in my apartment, at the library, and at a friend’s apartment who’s in the same class as me.

    Minimize distractions

    Millennials tend to always have their phone in their hands or have earbuds permanently attached to their ears. But when you’re studying, its best to put those distractions away and try to only focus on your coursework. The reason why this will increase the amount of material that you will remember is that you’ll be in the same environment during the test as when you studied the material. During an exam, you’re not able to listen to music or play on your phone so studying in a quiet location is the best possible option.

    Quiz yourself

    The best way to see if you know the material is to quiz yourself using tools, like Quizlet, to see where you need to focus on more. Create some questions that could be great questions that could be used on the test to get the best usage out of this studying tip.

    Study in 20-30 increments, then take a 5-minute break

    Your brain literally can’t stay focus for much longer than 20-30 minutes on any task, especially when it comes to learning and studying. Plus you’ll be thankful that you don’t have to study 24 hours to make an A on a test. It’s not about the time you spend studying, it’s the quality of the time that you spend studying.

    Pack up everything that you will need during the test

    It’s the worst feeling knowing that you left something at home that you needed for your test, such as a calculator or a cheat sheet that your teacher said you could have for the exam. So it’s best to go ahead and pack your backpack ( this is the exact one that I have and it’s been amazing! ) the night before with everything that you could possibly need for the exam.

    Here are some things that you should NOT do the night before an exam:

    Don’t pull an all-nighter

    You have to get some sleep before the exam or I promise you won’t remember as much as you think you do. At night, your brain moves information to short-term to long-term memory, but if you don’t sleep, then your body can’t do that.

    Don’t drink a ton of coffee the night before

    Caffeine creates a chemical imbalance in your body that allows your body to stay up for a long period of time and can make you feel jittery or hyped up. Stop drinking coffee around midday so your body can excrete the caffeine and allow you to get some rest that night.

    Cram for the upcoming test

    Cramming is no good when it comes to actually retaining the information or being able to remember it longer than an hour after reading the text. Try to plan ahead so that you can study with no pressure and less of a time restraint. My Erin Condren planner has been such a lifesaver whenever I need to plan out my study sessions for a big exam. There’s even an exact dupe for it, if its too expensive for your budget, its the Recollections planner at Michaels ! It’s basically the same planner for half the cost and I love it just the same.

    Change up your diet

    Now is not the time to decide that you want to go vegan or to try a new restaurant because you never know what might upset your stomach or make you feel sick the next day. Trust me, it’s not fun having to take a test sick from either the flu or just a bug virus.

    Do any intense workouts right before bed

    When you work out, your body goes into overdrive mode and is ready to take on the world. But that’s not the feeling that you want right before bed. Working out before bed can actually make you stay awake and not allow you to get quality sleep the night before the exam. If you do a workout the night before, do your workout early in the morning or in the afternoon, at least 4 hours before bed, to allow yourself time to relax enough to go to bed.

    The night before an exam is just a critical step of the process of studying because it can literally make or break your score on the test. Most people don’t realize it, but anything that affects your mind or body can drastically decrease or increase your grade on the exam the following day. I try to stay away from anything that could make me sad, mad, or that could make any changes to my lifestyle.

    Did you find this post helpful and informative?

    Then go ahead and give this post a share. I’d really appreciate it Thank you!

    Don’t let the last few hours before taking the ACT stress you out. Instead, keep in mind our night before the ACT tips, and get your mind and body ready for success.

    If you’re not sure what to eat the night before the test, we’ve got you covered with the best foods to eat before taking a test.

    Don’t Cram At The Last Minute!

    Don’t try to shove new information into your brain.

    The fact is you won’t be able to retain it adequately on test day itself. However, it’s fine to review. Things to review include:

    • Math formulas
    • Reading strategies
    • Basic grammar rules

    If you need to brush up on using some formulas and section formats from previous test prep, then go ahead. However, if you try shoving entirely new information into your brain, your nerves and memory retention will defeat you.

    Focus on what you’ve practiced so you feel comfortable. That’s the best you can do at this point. This is honestly one of the most important night before the ACT tips we can offer you.

    Pack Your Bag For The Morning

    Don’t rush to gather everything before heading out.

    Your nerves are going to be high, and forgetting something can easily happen. Your bag needs to include the following items:

    • Your Admission ticket
    • Two No.2 pencils
    • Eraser
    • ACT-approved ID
    • ACT-approved calculator

    Other items you can bring, but aren’t required, include:

    • A watch
    • Extra calculator batteries
    • A drink or water
    • Snacks (for breaks only)

    Make sure to not bring any devices with alarms or anything explicitly prohibited by ACT.

    Check Online For Your Test Center’s Info

    Make sure you know where you’re taking the test.

    Don’t use the morning of the ACT to map out where you’re going. Take a few minutes the night before to get the address, plot out your route, and see how long it’ll take to get there.

    Remember, the test administered early in the morning, so give yourself enough time to get there and settle in. Also, make sure to check online at the ACT website to see if there are any test site closures.

    This will happen mainly because of severe weather. You probably won’t be affected but double-check to be safe.

    Set Your Alarms, Yes Alarms

    One alarm might not be enough.

    Falling asleep might be tough due to nerves, so whatever sleep you get might be hard to wake up from in the morning. That’s why it’s a good idea to have multiple alarms ready to go:

    • Phone alarm
    • Regular alarm clock
    • Family member

    Turning off one alarm is easy. Getting up to turn off multiple alarms wakes you up enough to get going. You won’t like it, but it’ll make sure you aren’t late for your test administration.

    Have A Good Meal

    Don’t go to bed on an empty stomach.

    Hunger pangs won’t help you fall asleep. Instead, focus on having a healthy dinner. Focus on ingesting proteins and vegetables, and cut out any unhealthy carbohydrates.

    Also, make sure to not eat too late. If you eat too late into the night, your body will focus more on digestion than letting you rest.

    Plus you’ll feel more relaxed to rest for the remaining hours that night.

    Lay Out Your Clothes

    Be prepared with the right outfit.

    You’re not just dressing for success on test day. You’re dressing to be comfortable too. The biggest tip here is to bring layers with you.

    That way, you aren’t distracted by feeling either too hot or too cold. Keep an eye on what the next day’s weather will be, and pick out an outfit accordingly.

    Don’t hesitate to bring along a light jacket or hoodie, because you don’t know how cold the testing center is beforehand. If it gets too warm, then you can always remove that layer.

    Get To Bed EARLY

    Don’t risk your sleep the night before the test.

    You want to get a minimum of eight hours of sleep before your test day. Any less than that can affect your concentration and energy levels the next day.

    Remember, the ACT is mentally taxing even when you’re 100% prepared for it. To make things easier, look to go to bed 30 minutes to an hour before your regular bedtime.

    Your brain has extra time to unwind and let your body fall asleep. Things to avoid doing during this time include:

    • Playing video games
    • Texting
    • Being on the internet

    Shut down your electronics and focus on meditative breathing. It sounds odd, but using meditation and mindful breathing is a great way to calm your mind down, making it easier to fall asleep.

    Go ahead and use these night before the ACT tips, you’ll thank us later.

    For more test strategy, college admissions, and scholarship application tips sign up for our FREE class happening right now!

    How to cram the night before a test

    You have an important exam coming up for your college course, and you feel relaxed because you have a few weeks to study. But suddenly it’s the night before the big test. Panic sets in and you try to cram all your studying into one night, but you enter the exam unprepared. Does this sound like you?

    Read on to find out why you should avoid cramming the night before your big test.

    Why should you stop cramming?

    You may be putting off your studying for as long as possible, always finding excuses not to sit down and get to work. But using your time properly is the most effective way to ensure that you’re prepared for the exam. Through good time management, you can set out a study schedule, organise your notes and summaries, and review your work thoroughly before the big day arrives.

    Once you’ve memorised your study material, you’ll feel far more confident going into the exam. There are few things more rewarding than seeing the exam questions and knowing that you can answer them to the best of your ability. You’ll be thankful that you put in the proper preparation, instead of regretting that you didn’t start studying sooner and possibly failing the test.

    Getting a good night’s sleep before the test will also ensure that you’re feeling fresh when you step into the exam room. Cramming into the early hours of the morning will leave you feeling drained, and it will be more difficult to concentrate, especially when you’re under pressure to remember all the information you attempted to cram into your head the night before.

    In summary, when you stop cramming the night before an exam:
    • You will realise how big a difference it makes when you give your brain more time to process information after you’ve studied it.
    • You will have more time to rest the night before an exam, meaning that you will feel more relaxed, and your levels of concentration will be higher during your exam.
    • You will feel more confident.
    • You will be able to recall information more easily.

    How to avoid last-minute cramming

    As stated previously, proper time management is the key to preparing for an exam. Although it can sometimes be difficult to find the motivation to study, you need to remind yourself that the work you put in now will be highly beneficial for your future.

    Here are some study tips to prevent high-stress cramming:

    Draw up a schedule

    Your preparations should start a few weeks before the exam. This is especially important if you’re studying part-time and balancing your studies with a job and family, as your studying may be restricted to perhaps one or two hours a day. Work out which times will suit you best, and commit to sticking to these times. After you’ve completed a session, cross it out on your schedule to recognise that you’ve achieved something.

    Find a learning style that suits you

    People retain information in different ways. It’s important that you find the right study style for you. If you’re studying using a method not suited to you, it may take longer to memorise and process the necessary information, and you’ll find yourself running out of time before the exam. As a general tip, spider diagrams and mind maps are often more effective than conventional notes. Reducing a large amount of information into a single cue word can also help you to retain more information.

    Find your most effective study style here.

    Get plenty of sleep

    Sleep is essential for memory, concentration and mental performance. You’re unlikely to get a good night’s sleep when you’re cramming the night before an exam, and this is likely to affect your concentration on the big day. This is compounded by the fact that the high-pressure environment of last-minute revision makes it more difficult to retain information. With your notes properly prepared and memorised well before the exam, you can get a good night’s sleep and feel well-rested in the exam room.

    These are just a handful of tips for studying effectively and preventing the stress of cramming the night before. See more useful tips by reading:

    It’s the night before the ACT and you may have already heard that you should NOT panic. In addition to focusing on remaining calm, you can add the following to your get-an-awesome-ACT-score to-do list:

    1. Don’t cram!

    You should not be studying any new material! You can certainly review ACT math formulas you intend to use and recommended ACT approaches, but do not cram new information into your brain!

    2. Pack Your Bag!

    Even if you usually grab your things as you run out the door in the morning, the night before the ACT is different. Have everything ready the night before so you can spend the next morning eating a healthy breakfast and reading a book or article to wake up your brain. Follow the Official ACT checklist, which includes your admission ticket, two No. 2 pencils, an eraser, ACT-approved ID, and an ACT-approved calculator. They also recommend a watch, a bag or backpack, extra batteries for your calculator, a drink, and snacks.

    3. Check Test Center Info.

    Make sure you know where you’re going! The morning of the ACT is not the time to figure out how long it’s going to take to travel to the testing center. Also, make sure there aren’t any test site closings due to severe weather.

    4. Set your alarms.

    Sure, one alarm is good, but why not set three? You can use your phone, an alarm clock, and a helpful person or pet. It’s hard to stay asleep if someone is dragging you out of bed by your toes.

    5. Sleep and eat well

    You don’t want to go to bed too early since staring at the ceiling won’t help, but you do want to get at least eight hours of sleep if possible. Also, a healthy dinner and breakfast can help you feel your best.

    How to Pass a Chemistry Exam

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    How to cram the night before a test

    Martin Shields/Getty Images

    Passing a chemistry exam can seem like an overwhelming task, but you can do this! Here are the top 10 tips for passing a chemistry exam. Take them to heart and pass that test!

    Prepare Before the Test

    Study. Get a good night’s sleep. Eat breakfast. If you’re someone who drinks caffeinated drinks, today is not the day to skip it. Similarly, if you never drink caffeine, today is not the day to start. Get to the exam early enough that you have time to get organized and relax.

    Write Down What You Know

    Don’t risk drawing a blank when confronted with a calculation! If you memorized constants or equations, write them down even before you look at the test.

    Read the Instructions

    Read the instructions for the test! Find out whether points will be deducted for wrong answers and whether you have to answer all of the questions. Sometimes chemistry tests allow you to choose which questions to answer. For example, you may need to only work 5/10 problems. If you don’t read the test instructions, you might do more work than you need to and waste valuable time.

    Preview the Test

    Scan the test to see which questions are worth the most points. Prioritize the high-point questions, to make sure you get them done.

    Decide How to Use Your Time

    You may be tempted to rush on in, but take a minute to relax, compose yourself, and figure out where you need to be when your allotted time is halfway over. Decide which questions you’re going to answer first and how much time you’ll give yourself to go back over your work.

    Read Each Question Completely

    You may think you know where a question is going, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Also, chemistry questions often have multiple parts. Sometimes you can get hints on how to work a problem by seeing where the question is going. Sometimes you can even find the answer to the first part of a question this way.

    Answer Questions You Know

    There are two reasons for this. First, it builds confidence, which helps you relax and improves your performance on the remainder of the test. Second, it gets you some quick points, so if you run out of time on the test then at least you got some right answers. It may seem logical to work a test from the beginning to the end. If you are confident that you have time and know all the answers, this is a good way to avoid accidentally missing questions, but most students do better if they skip over harder questions and then go back to them.

    Show Your Work

    Write down what you know, even if you don’t know how to work the problem. This can serve as a visual aid to jar your memory or it can earn you partial credit. If you end up getting the question wrong or leaving it incomplete, it helps your instructor understand your thought process so you can still learn the material. Also, make sure you show your work neatly. If you are working out an entire problem, circle or underline the answer so your instructor can find it.

    Don’t Leave Blanks

    It’s rare for tests to penalize you for wrong answers. Even if they do, if you can eliminate even one possibility, it’s worth it to take a guess. If you aren’t penalized for guessing, there is no reason not to answer a question. If you don’t know an answer to a multiple choice question, try to eliminate possibilities and make a guess. If it’s a true guess, choose “B” or “C”. If it’s a problem and you don’t know the answer, write down everything you know and hope for partial credit.

    Check Your Work

    Make sure you answered every question. Chemistry questions often provide means of checking your answers to make sure they make sense. If you are undecided between two answers to a question, go with your first instinct.