Practice Makes Perfect
The best way to physically and mentally prepare for the written exam is to take practice exams. This will give you a feel for the real deal. Start out by taking the practice exams as “open book” tests. Work your way up to giving yourself a time limit. Finally, before the big day, take a practice exam as if it is the real thing without notes or help of any kind. This will help you to gauge how well you actually know the material.
Understand Instead of Memorize
Memorizing is an extremely useful tool, and will certainly help you to a certain extent on the written exam. However, the key to being fully prepared is to understand the material and not just memorize it. The reason for this is if you truly understand the material. No matter how the question is asked on the exam, you will arrive at the correct answer. If you only memorize the material, an alternate wording on the exam can very well throw you and lead to an incorrect answer.
Real World Applications
For concepts, you are having difficulty with, come up with real-world scenarios. By doing so, instead of just being words on a page or random facts, you can create an association between the information and how it applies to the real world. Real world applications make the information more relevant to your life.
Utilize Study Strategies
Do not be afraid to utilize study strategies for the material you struggle with. Common examples of study strategies include flashcards, songs, rhymes, a phrase, or just about anything else that you can create an association with that will help you remember and understand the material come test time.
Be Fresh and Alert
Last but not least, the night before the exam is not the night to stay up late watching a movie or hanging with your buddies. Go to bed at a decent hour and get a good night’s sleep. Eat a filling breakfast on the morning of the exam. A good night’s sleep and a good breakfast will ensure you are fresh and alert to take your exam.