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Prepare to Ace Your Midterms and Finals

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For the vast majority of high school students, midterms are looming either right before or right after the winter vacation. (Finals for semester-long courses.)

These exams often count for a significant percentage of a student’s final grade in a class. And while standardized test scores and essays are all important, the academic transcript is the most important component of a college application.

Here are some tips on how to prepare:

Go for extra help. Too many students are afraid or embarrassed to ask their teachers for extra help on areas of weakness. A more personal conversation with a teacher can resolve weeks of confusion in class. (Not to mention the teacher is writing your midterm or final exam, so they may even highlight the material that is most important!)

Plan Ahead. Many students have family trips and gatherings planned for the vacation – not mention holiday plans. That is not an excuse to not start studying early. Carve out time to get a jump start on preparing.

Study – a healthy amount. Start studying early, but do not study too much. Exhaustion from losing hours of sleep every night can be even more detrimental than not sufficiently preparing. 

Lose the cell phone! Two hours of studying with constant interruptions from texts and calls will be much less useful than one hour of completely focused studying. Background noise like music is one thing, but constant chatter will completely disrupt any sort of learning.

Choose study buddies. Sometimes studying in a group can be hugely beneficial. Reteach the material to one another. Reason through complicated ideas together until everyone can explain them on their own. Actively engaging in studying can yield even greater results than just reading over notes.

» Read More Education, Test and Prep Insights from Eric Karlan
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