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Jayne Miller By Jayne Miller • February 29, 2016

5 Digital Study Tips for Test-Taking Season

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It's testing season.

Really - midterms are creeping up, as are a collection of spring standardized tests across the country. For many high school students, the SATs and ACTs are also looming in the background.

Yeesh.

We know our students have a legit workload right now, so we did a quick inventory of digital study tips. Share them with your students, have them try different study methods, and remind folks to keep calm between exams. The hard work will pay off.

Set a Study Notification

As tempting as it might be to set up a giant, all night study session, that’s not what’s best for your brain. Your brain is going to do much better with smaller chunks that are more evenly spaced out. Get yourself to work in a few 30 minute review sessions throughout the week.

Try blocking out chunks of time on your Chalkup calendar or setting to-do reminders to force these shorter review sessions into your schedule. As you build a routine that embraces short, focused bursts of studying over marathon sessions, you’ll find your energy and memorization will benefit.

Study Tunes

Music can seriously combat stress. If you have a case of the pre-test jitters - and you sense that it’s keeping you from a focused and meaningful review session - try some soothing background music.

It might take some experimenting to find what songs, or ambient noise, help you relax and focus on the material. For a starting point, we collected music for concentration and deep focus.

Don't Waste Time Searching

If studying includes research and general fact finding, make the most of your time. By practicing shortkeys and using search hacks like these, you’ll spend more time with high-quality content that is relevant to your classes and less time looking for good stuff.

And as a general rule: friends share great content. If you find a stellar video, academic article, or interview that your classmates would benefit from - share the wealth. It will come back to you.

Create an Online Support System

You don’t need to go it alone. Study groups can be a source of encouragement and motivation. (If you missed our earlier blog on forming the ideal group, catch up here.)

But when schedules and logistics make it easy to get together, a virtual study group is potentially a solution for support when you need it.

Flashcards

Flashcards have been proven time and time again that they are one of the best ways to learn (and retain) new information. There are so many opportunities to accommodate different learning styles - hearing information, seeing it, holding it.

As Stefon would say: "this study method has everything." Repetition. Association. Tactile learning.

During a hectic test season, keep a stack of flashcards by your bed side. It’s a great pre-sleep activity when it’s a good idea to power down anything with a screen (turning off screens is really helpful for catching Zs, but that’s another blog post). For everywhere else, look for a trusty digital flashcard deck that travels well.

 

Click to download.