Over the years, an observation that I have consistently made with students who position themselves for test prep success is the following: if you take care of the details and the process, the results will usually follow.
Now, what does this mean in reality and how can I implement some small changes which can make a big difference?
The simplest, yet most overlooked, steps in my opinion are the following:
- Maintain a clean, organised learning environment with an uncluttered desk. Additionally, ensure your test prep notes are well organised.
- Seek out a quiet learning environment. This one can be particularly difficult when travelling, but do your best to choose a quieter time to meet. Prioritize times where you will not be distracted or in a noisy environment to complete homework and have lessons. You may need to enlist your family’s help to achieve this, but if you explain why it’s important they will likely be more than willing to assist.
- Consistency beats intensity. Rather than setting yourself up for failure during a busy week by trying to take a full test in one go, break it up into 1 section per day, and complete that amount. Good filing habits compliment this step well.
- Follow momentum: If you have momentum and energy to complete more, do. I often find students procrastinate more when they feel like they have to do enormous amounts of work, but this doesn’t have to be the case. Start off small, and the sense of accomplishment can energise you to complete more.
- Think in months, act in days: Many students overestimate what they can do in a week, but underestimate the amount they can achieve in 2 months. Discuss this with your mentor and learn from this experience.
Less can be more with test prep. A thoughtful, medium-long term approach broken down into bite size chunks with a nurturing learning environment can lead to significant improvement in your score.
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