Study Habits for All Knowledge Exams
Good study habits are one of the biggest predictors of success for students of all ages and for any type of knowledge exam. Unfortunately, very few schools take the time to teach effective methods of learning and internalizing information, which can turn studying into an exercise in frustration. Below are some of the best tips and techniques for getting the most out of your study sessions and permit practice without the need for stressful last-minute crams:
Take Good Notes
To truly make the most of your time studying, it is essential to take good notes. Instead of trying to write down every single word that a teacher says, focus on the major ideas and important supporting information. Use shorthand, abbreviations, or any other shortcuts that allow you to summarize the information without falling behind. On the other hand, if your teacher takes the time to write something out on the board, it is almost always important enough to jot down. Keep your notes organized and think of them as an outline for your study session.
This also applies when just reading a driver’s manual. Underline or mark important facts in the booklet. Summarize the same facts in notes with your own words.
Cut Out Distractions
Studies have shown that information is easier to remember when you are able to focus your attention on it. Avoid the temptation to watch TV, eat a meal, or browse the web during your study time. While some people can focus with music playing – especially classical or instrumental music – other people may struggle with even minor background noises. Try to find a comfortable, quiet place that lets you relax and study without interruption.
Break it up
While most students are familiar with last-minute cramming for a knowledge exam, it is much easier to retain information if you break it up into smaller pieces and take breaks in between. This way, the brain has an easier time of cataloging and recalling the material that is being studied. Long cram sessions without breaks can even temporarily deplete the glucose that your brain uses for fuel.
Read it, Write It, Speak It
Most students read through their notes and call it a night. However, research suggests that you can drastically improve your ability to remember things come test time if you take the time to write out the important facts and read them out loud, which forces the mind to store the information in three different forms instead of one.
For your driver’s license or permit test, it may also help to discuss safe driving practices, laws, and road signs with an experienced driver. Even things that seems to be only common sense can be worth talking about, since it helps you to remember.
Rewarding yourself with a snack or a short break after a certain amount of studying or a practice test is a great way to condition yourself to keep going when the study material becomes a chore. Make it even better by treating yourself to a caffeinated drink such as coffee or tea, since caffeine has been shown to make a person more focused and alert.
Learn What Works for You
Not everyone studies the same way, so it can be extremely beneficial to try a few different tactics. Find out whether you work best in the mornings or at night, or whether your studying improves in a group setting. Testing out new ways to study can let you pinpoint the perfect environment to maximize your time and minimize the stress.
One sure-fire way to make sure you are learning the material is to test yourself over it. Many textbooks have review questions at the end of each section, but it may also be worthwhile to write your own quiz or to have someone else write one.
When it comes to your permit practice quiz, some driver’s manuals have practice questions at the end, others don’t. Be sure to check out the official DMV site in your state. You may find some practice questions online. These are not the real permit questions, just sample questions and answers.
Licenseroute.com, however, have all the questions you need to run several practice tests for your final DMV written knowledge test. 500+ questions for each state have you completely covered. Make sure you read the comments and understand each answer. Remember: Read it, Write It, Speak It!
For tricky facts like names and dates, flash cards can be an excellent way to memorize information in a hurry. But they usually do not help to gain real knowledge and understanding of safe driving practices or driving laws.
Whether it’s for a simple quiz or a DMV knowledge exam, proper studying habits are the biggest deciding factor when it comes to making a good grade. By using the tips and techniques outlined above, anyone can dramatically increase the speed and effectiveness of their study sessions, without the need for hectic last-minute cramming.
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