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Exam preparation resources

Exam preparation and writing

Exam Preparation through Lectures and Readings
As you complete the lecture and reading for each topic in a course, go through this checklist to enhance your learning and begin the process of effective exam preparation.

How to Study Efficiently and Effectively
Covers study schedule, study environment, and effective study strategies.

Exam Prep: 5 Key Strategies (Video)
By studying with a plan, you can study both more efficiently and effectively. In this Student Learning Commons video (5:12) you will learn five key strategies for more successful exam prep.

5 Key Strategies
Handout on the essentials of exam preparation.

Preparing an Exam Prep Inventory (SLC Video)
Watch this short (2:09) Student Learning Commons video to help you prepare for your exams! Creating an Exam Prep Inventory will help you plan your study time and ensure that you are covering all the important course topics, as you study for your exam. 

Preparing an Exam Prep Inventory

Previous & Practice Exams
Tips on how to find previous or practice exams for your courses, useful tools for exam preparation.

Identifying Levels of Learning

Understanding Action Words in Questions
Helps make sure you're answering the question that is asked on the exam.

Improve Your Memory
Research on learning and memory has shown that the best way to process and retain information is by ensuring that you get a good night’s sleep on a regular basis, studying consistently over time instead of cramming, and using deep processing strategies as you study.

Worksheet for Examining Returned Tests
Use this sheet with your previous exams to analyze patterns of errors that you often make and prevent yourself from making the same errors on your next test.

Creating a Study Plan Video (

A Guide to University Learning (University of Guelph)
Information and practice exercises which take you through the process of writing a multiple choice exam after guiding you through the exam preparation stages of reading the course outline, learning from textbooks and lectures, and studying for an exam.

Improving Test Performance (Virginia Tech)
An online workshop covering both the study strategy and the time management aspects of exam preparation.

Exam Preparation (Academic Advancement Centre at Ohio University)
Interactive 7-part online workshop that allows you to evaluate your current exam preparation strategies, takes you through when and how to review and gives you tips for writing exams and analyzing returned exams.

Study habits

Video: Academic Success- the Curve of Forgetting (SLC)
If you have ever wondered why you can't remember material from previous classes and notes, this short Student Learning Commons video will show you why regular review is SO important, and how you can improve your memory, and your grades! 

Reviewing after Lecture
A key step in your regular study routine.

Curve of Forgetting (University of Waterloo)
If this doesn't convince you that daily review is necessary and doable, we don't know what will!

Scientifically, The Best Way to Prepare for exams
Study habits and strategies based on scientific research.

Getting Ready for Exams Video (McMaster University)
Scroll down for a video that covers the time management aspect of exam preparation.

Study Environment Analysis (Virginia Tech)
Allows you to compare 3 places to determine the best place for you to study.

Ten Traps of Studying (University of Connecticut)
How to work on your courses on a regular basis, how to prepare for various types of tests, and ten traps that students fall into that sabotage their exam performance.

Study strategies

Active Learning and Academic Study Strategies (City College of San Francisco)
Effective study methods to use all semester and at exam time.

The Six Hour D and How to Avoid It
A psych professor explains how to engage in self-testing and why.

Predicting Test Questions (Western Washington University)
How to gradually generate questions for self-testing.

Question Method of Studying Video (McMaster University)
Description and example of one of the best methods of test preparation, including a discussion of levels of learning. This video is found near the top of the page, under the "Full Frontal Learning" heading. Watch the Windows Media Player or QuickTime version.

Memory improvement (Academic Advancement Centre at Ohio University)
Interactive 4-part online workshop that allows you to evaluate your existing memory techniques, explains the theory behind memory and forgetting and gives you tips.

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