exam-choiceMC writes, "As it relates to taking the exam, would you recommend reading the answers first, then read the question?"

Thanks for the question, MC. What seems to work best for most people is to read the question first--stop and think what the answer might be--then read the answers and find the one closest to what you'd been thinking.

On a long, timed test like the social work licensing exam, reading the answers first may be a risky strategy since you'd be adding to the amount of time you're taking on each item. That said, you may have seen research that shows that you can come close to passing the social work exam without ever reading the question stems. So either way, maybe you're okay.

If you've discovered with practice exams that you're a quick test-taker, then the answers-first approach might be worth a try--just to see what happens. If you do get better results that way, let us know!

Most tips on test-taking focus on careful reading and deliberation on each item. Here are few select pieces of advice about multiple-choice exams from studygs.net:

Eliminate options you know to be incorrect

If allowed, mark words or alternatives in questions that eliminate the option

Give each option of a question the "true-false test"

This may reduce your selection to the best answer.

Question options that are totally unfamiliar to you.

Question options that contain negative or absolute words.

Find more on the site and also on a similar page at about.com.

For a researched-based approach to test preparation, take a look at this article from Psych Central. In short: practice tests are a good idea. So, good thing you've found SWTP!

For more links to test-taking strategies, including reducing test anxiety, take a look at our Study Tips page.

However you choose to tackle the test, wishing you the best of luck! Congratulations in advance on getting licensed!

If you have a question you'd like to see covered here, write ask@socialworktestprep.com.

March 28, 2013
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