As technology continues to advance, the traditional “pen-to-paper” exam is being interchanged with a newer, more innovative way to assess a student’s knowledge—online exams. Taking virtual exams can present challenges, so students must construct a test-preparation strategy that works best for them. Read about four test strategies that should be followed in order to ace online exams this semester!
Check Test Parameters
Before beginning an online exam, you need to become acquainted with the boundaries of the test and how it is given. Read over the class syllabus or reach out to your professor to gain knowledge about the parameters of the exam. Ask questions like:
- When is the test given?
- How long do I have to take it?
- Can you leave the test page once you start it?
- Can you skip questions and return to them later?
These are all aspects of online exams that can differ depending on the professor, class or program. Overall, learning your exam limitations serves as a large part of online test-preparation. Avoid the stress of the unknown by answering all queries well before starting your exam.
Study, Study, Study
Online exams require preparation. Students are recommended to take online practice tests, make flash cards and participate in study groups just as they would with any other exam. Ensure you are noting what you do and don’t understand. By finding gaps in the material and identifying topics you don’t understand, you allow yourself time to further your comprehension before the test. Additionally, if your exam happens to allow open book notes, you still need to master the material ahead of time in order to optimize your test score.
Give Yourself Plenty of Time
Time management is one of the most important aspects of online test-taking. Though procrastination is oftentimes in our nature, it is recommended not to wait until the last possible minute. Online exams might present a larger time window, but it is crucial that you take initiative to set aside the time to complete it.
On another note, time management also holds importance after you’ve started the exam. Make sure to watch the clock. Complete easy questions first and return for the hard ones afterwards to ensure you have enough time to complete your test. Additionally, if your exam is open book and you opted out of studying, time will be your worst enemy. Looking up every answer without any knowledge on the topic is a long, tedious task. Set yourself up for success and do your part by studying beforehand.
Be Prepared for Technological Issues
Though technology is extremely beneficial, it can occasionally be a hindrance. One of the most important, neglected aspects of online test taking is making sure your computer is well-equipped. Before starting your online exam, make a checklist of all the potential technical glitches that could occur—and make sure you’re prepared. Here are some examples of questions to ask before beginning your test:
- Is the computer fully charged?
- Are pop-up blockers disabled?
- Is the Wi-Fi connection stable?
- Is the Java Installation up-to-date?
If you answered yes to those questions, you’re good to go!
Though online test taking has its challenges, put these four tips for preparation into action. Find what works best for you. If you have any questions about an upcoming online exam, please reach out to your professor.