No matter what age you are, research has determined the methods that are most effective in learning and recalling information for tests.
- Study 20% more than you think you need to study. Research has shown that people think they know more than they actually know. Fourth and fifth graders were asked to study as much as they thought was necessary to learn information from a social studies passage. The average passing grade was 68%. When these students were required to study as long as necessary to score 100% on a test, the necessary amount of time significantly increased.
- Read a passage and immediately write an essay for about 10 minutes about what you just read. This is called a “retrieval practice test”. Students who used this study method recalled 50% more information one week later compared to students who either just read the passage or read the passage and immediately made concept maps or diagrams on what they read.