5 Steps to a 5
AP Tests and finals for most are beginning next week and it can be hard to know how to study effectively to get the scores you want. With new formats for all subjects you may feel like you have no clue where to even begin. Getting good scores on your AP's do matter as many schools have already committed to continue to give credit for some 3's, 4's, and 5's. Read below to get the best study tips so that you can succeed this exam season!
1. Make a study plan/schedule
Everyone loves a traditional study guide, but putting dates in there for each topic will keep you accountable and keep you on track. Doing a little bit of work each day is much better than cramming it all in at the end. I like to outline the sections of material I will need to know for the big test, count up the days I have, and then divide the work evenly among those days leaving a buffer day or two before the test incase I skip a day or want to squeeze in an extra practice test.
2. Create the ideal work environment
This may seem basic, but to get optimal focus in your study sesh this is very important. Turn off your phone, get out of bed, clean off your workspace and get going. Make sure you have water nearby and even a snack to eat while studying. Set a timer for 30 minutes and go! 30 minute increments are scientifically proven to be the best way to study so after 30 minutes reward yourself with a 15 minute phone break and then get going again!
3. TAKE PRACTICE TESTS!
I can't straess enough how important it is to take practice tests in general and especially now with new formats. You can do this at the college board's youtube channel which is linked in our AP SZN article full of resources. There are timed practices just like the real thing. Taking practice tests and doing practice problems is the best way to study. Most people learn well from trial and error plus it is a great way to assess the material you need to work on most.
4. Face-time a Friend
Call up a friend! They don't necessarily have to be in your class, just patient enough to listen to you. If you can explain the material you are learning to them without any notes - you're definitely good to go. One thing I learned a long time ago is that lots of people can sit down and do the problems and get them right, but the smartest people know how to actually explain and lay out the concepts for others. If no friends are available sit down your dog, mom, or just say it to a mirror! You can always book a tutoring session too and one of our tutors would be happy to listen and help double check your info!
5. Use the Leitner system!
The Leitner system is a method of studying information and it is one of my favorites to use when I have lots of things to memorize! It's ideal for vocabulary, dates you need to remember, or anything that can be placed on a flashcard. Basically you make a few piles of cards (however many you want) and start at the first one. Once you get every single one correct you move onto the second pile. If you mess up in the second pile you start from the beginning. You keep moving until you have gotten every single flashcard correct in one attempt. Here is a diagram that will help this system make more sense. It is a great way to learn information and memorize it!
6. Get one on one help
I know we said 5 steps to a 5, but this one we had to just tack on at the end. If you are unsure on some information or want someone to work extra practice problems with you getting one on one help is the right choice. When you work one on one with someone you can get that special attention that will appeal to exactly what you need when studying. Sign up for a tutoring session for FREE with us and any of our amazing tutors would be happy to help you! If you do want something a bit bigger sign up for a group session with our AP Study Groups - another great way to get the help you need!
If you use these tips you are guaranteed to do well on your upcoming exams! Don't forget to sign up for tutoring, AP Study Groups, or just email us with questions @ firstname.lastname@example.org We believe you are going to do great this exam season, you've got this!
As always stay happy & healthy
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