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10 tips for acing your AP tests

 
The mere thought of AP exams can cause ya a major freakout. But dodging all that drama is key. Remember: you’re an all-star student with nothing to fear. And if you work the right way, your study seshes will be stress-free and you’ll grab the grade you want. Here’s how:

 

Timing is everything

Cramming the week before is a def no, but so is beginning your prep years in advance. Instead, find a practical middle ground for your starting point.

 

Make a schedule

Check out that calendar and set certain goals for certain dates. Making a plan and giving yourself deadlines is an important study skill (and life skill!) to have.

 

Do some research

Read up on books about the test and what to expect. The more you know, the more prepared you’ll feel.

 

Personalize your routine

Everyone learns differently, so the study tips your BFF swears by may not be the right ones for you. Base your methods on what’s worked in the past. Start with the simple stuff: Alone or with friends? Background music or total quiet? In your room or at the park?

 

Practice, practice, practice

If you wanna ace these toughies, you’ve gotta be ready to work. Committing yourself to studying (a lot) is your best chance at test success. But…

 

Don’t overdo it

Forcing yourself to fight through endless hours of impossible problems can actually have the opposite effect of good practice. Stressing out and pushing yourself too far is bad for you and doesn’t work.

 

Pinpoint your problems

No one expects you to be perfect, so don’t be afraid of confronting your weaknesses. Discovering problem parts is the first step to conquering them. Face those flaws head-on!

 

Stay positive

Sometimes it can feel like you’re getting every question wrong, and that your only option is to give up. Don’t! Never let yourself be discouraged. These kinds of tests aren’t about getting 100 percent, they’re about doing the best that you can do.

 

Ask for help

Use all your resources as much as you can. If you run into trouble, teachers, parents and tutors will always be there for ya. There’s no shame in getting a little supportive boost.

 

Have the right night

Never underestimate the importance of the night before! Don’t study (yup, we said don’t). Instead, clear your head, relax and get a good night’s sleep. The next morning, you’ll feel refreshed and ready to rock it.
 
 
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BY JULIE HARANS ON 4/18/2013 12:49:00 PM

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