SUCCESS TEST TAKING STRATEGY
STEP ONE: “S”
Describe Step 1: Prepare to Succeed: To be successful you need to prepare to do a task. When the teacher passes out a test for you to take in one of your classes, you can get ready to take it by doing several things. 1. Say affirmations An affirmation is a positive statement such as: a. I will do well on this test b. I will pass this test c. I will stay calm d. I am prepared for this test e. I am going to read the directions carefully, answer the ones I know first, and go back to the harder ones
Research has shown that if you think positive thoughts while you do a task you’ll do better on the task than if you think negative thoughts.
2. Put your name and SUCCESS on your test 3. Determine time needed. Determine the amount of time for the test and decide how much time to spend on each section of the test. Check the clock as you take the test to help you stick to the schedule. 4. Use slow breathing and relax 5. Start the test within 2 minutes. ANDS is the mnemonic device that can be used to remember Step 1.
Describe Step 2: Underline the instructions: Generally, there are instructions at the beginning of a test and at the beginning of each section of a test. These instructions tell us what to do to indicate the correct answer and where to put the answer. You must mark the answer how and where you are directed. Many students lose points on tests simply by not following the instructions. 1. Read instructions carefully 2. Underline what to do 3. Notice special requirements RUN is the mnemonic device to remember step 2.
Describe Step 3: Carefully, read and remember 1. Carefully read the whole question to the very last word. Sometimes the very last word in a question changes the meaning of the rest of the words in the question. Carefully read ALL the answer choices on a multiple choice question Sometimes the very last answer in multiple-choice options is slightly better than the other options. If you choose an answer that you think is right without reading all the choices you may miss the choice that is the BEST answer to the question. 2. Remember what you studied After you’ve read the question and before you’ve answered the question, you need to remember what you’ve studied. “What did I study that would help me answer this question?” Tools to help you remember what you read and studied are: a. underline (highlight) key information (sticky notes) b. annotate in the margins main ideas (sticky notes) c. visual learners can draw small pictures to help connect to the text. This can be like a “visual script” that keeps them from drifting away during reading. d. Thinking maps e. Use index cards as a study sheet
Describe Step 4: Complete or come back to 1. Complete the question if you are certain of the answer 2. Answer the easy questions first. Do not spend too much time on one particular question. 3. Come back to the question for the moment if you are not sure of the answer. Mark questions you are coming back to by circling the question.
If answering questions on a scantron, be sure to either skip the proper bubble as you move on to the next question or lightly bubble in your best guess (when guessing, chose the same letter c is suggested).
Describe Step 5: Examine skipped questions Examine means to go back to the unanswered questions and answer them or move to step 6 for help.
Describe Step 6: Speculate your choice Make your best guess as to the right answer. You should never speculate or use a guessing technique when you have knowledge about an answer. You should guess only after you have tried every technique you know for remembering an answer. Guess only as a last resort using the RAM Guessing Technique. 1. Remove similar choices 2. Avoid absolutes a. Examples: never, always, none, all, every Eliminate these choices by crossing them off as answers b. Non-absolute words are better choices such as usually or seldom 3. Most detailed or longest choice should be selected if there are no absolutes 4. Eliminate similar choices RAM is the mnemonic device to remember step 6
Describe Step 7: Survey After answering all the abandoned questions look back over the test. Mane sure you answered all the questions and in the correct manner. Erase any stray marks on the answer sheet. Only change an answer if you find you marked it in the wrong place or if you’re completely sure another answer is better. Usually your first choice is the correct one. If you’re not sure, don’t change it. SUCCESS will help you remember the seven steps of the strategy. When you take a test, write SUCCESS at the top of the test form.