What Are the Best Tips for Standardized Test Practice?

Jessica Ellis
Jessica Ellis
Jessica Ellis
Jessica Ellis
An answer sheet for a multiple choice standardized test.
An answer sheet for a multiple choice standardized test.

Using good standardized test tips can help improve performance on nearly any standardized tests, from college aptitude examinations to professional licensing tests. Some of the best ways to improve standardized test performance include taking practice tests, finding areas of testing weakness for extra study, learning the tricks of the test, and taking test preparation courses. Since standardized tests are formulaic by nature, it is often easy to find training resources to help with any specific test.

Taking test preparation courses is a good way to improve results on a standardized test.
Taking test preparation courses is a good way to improve results on a standardized test.

Standardized test practice exams can be an excellent way to train for a specific test. Many testing companies offer practice booklets and study guides that include sample tests and material for understanding each type of question on the test. The sample tests allow students to score their performance in order to find out exactly which questions were answered incorrectly. Some practice booklets include detailed explanations of each question, and explain how to arrive at the correct answer. Doing standardized test practice exams regularly can also help students get a feel for the type of questions and time limits of the test.

One of the benefits of standardized test practice quizzes is that they help identify consistent areas of weakness. If a student constantly has trouble with analogy questions, for instance, this will quickly become apparent through self-scored standardized test practice examinations. By discovering areas of weakness, a student can then focus his or her study time better, in order to concentrate on areas that need improvement. Prioritizing study time can help test-takers avoid wasting time doing exercises or worksheets to improve areas in which they are already proficient.

Even the smartest people may run up against some standardized test questions they simply do not know. For these cases, it helps to study any tricks of the test that may help a test-taker make an educated guess when the answer is not clear. For instance, with multiple choice questions in math, the correct answer can sometimes be reached by plugging each answer back into the question to see if it works. With vocabulary questions, it may help to look at the available answers to determine if any are clearly incorrect, then make a “best guess” from the remaining options. While learning tricks may not be the most thorough means of standardized test practice, they can help make the difference for especially difficult questions.

Since standardized tests are given regularly and do not often change from year to year, some students may benefit from taking a training course with a professional or former student who excelled at the test. Tutoring or test-prep classes may be available on a one-on-one or group basis, either in person or online, and can help students who are not improving through self-directed study. One of the major benefits of a standardized test practice class is that the instructor can spend time with each student, offering worksheets and strategies personalized to their particular testing concerns.

Jessica Ellis
Jessica Ellis

With a B.A. in theater from UCLA and a graduate degree in screenwriting from the American Film Institute, Jessica is passionate about drama and film. She has many other interests, and enjoys learning and writing about a wide range of topics in her role as a wiseGEEK writer.

Jessica Ellis
Jessica Ellis

With a B.A. in theater from UCLA and a graduate degree in screenwriting from the American Film Institute, Jessica is passionate about drama and film. She has many other interests, and enjoys learning and writing about a wide range of topics in her role as a wiseGEEK writer.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discuss this Article

Post your comments
Login:
Forgot password?
Register:
    • An answer sheet for a multiple choice standardized test.
      An answer sheet for a multiple choice standardized test.
    • Taking test preparation courses is a good way to improve results on a standardized test.
      Taking test preparation courses is a good way to improve results on a standardized test.