Studying for a math test requires a different approach than studying for tests in many other subjects. In many subjects, such as history for example, memorizing facts and dates for a test is important. While formulas and rules do have to be memorized for a math test, the important thing is to know how to use them.
Here are some ideas that will help you study well for a math test.
- Be sure to attend all classes leading up to a test. Teachers usually provide many practice problems that are like the problems that will be on the test.
- Complete all of the problems provided in your textbook. Do this a number of times so that solving the problems becomes routine. Don't just look up the answer to a problem when you become stuck. Keep trying to work the problem out before looking up the answer.
- Review your homework assignments. Redo the problems to ensure your full understanding. Try to find other problems that are similar so that you can get as much practice as possible.
- Use your own words to explain to yourself the steps you are following to solve problems. Doing this will make the problems more familiar to you and therefore easier to remember how to solve them.
- Distinguish between various types of problems. Look for identifying characteristics of a problem that will give you clues to what type of problem it is and what must be done to solve it.
- Use flash cards to help you memorize formulas and rules.
- Try to understand how a formula is derived so that you will be able to apply it to the various problems that may appear on a test.
- If you are not allowed to use a calculator when taking the test, do all your calculations by hand when studying.
- Study in an active manner. Draw pictures and diagrams of the process involved in solving a problem.
- Start studying early so that you can ask your teacher to clarify any questions you may have.
Remember - you can't just read your textbook to prepare for a math test. You must actively study and practice, practice, practice.