Active learning is an approach to study that involves engaging with the material through various strategies to enhance comprehension and retention. It typically involves techniques such as self-assessment, reflection, and practice. When preparing for exams like the ASWB exam, active learning can be highly effective in improving your understanding and performance. Here's how:
Familiarize yourself with the exam format: Begin by understanding the structure and content of the ASWB exam. Review the exam guidelines, content outlines, any other relevant information to gain a clear understanding of what to expect.
Start with content review: Begin your preparation by reviewing the key concepts, theories, and topics covered in the exam. Use textbooks, study guides, online resources, or lecture notes to refresh your knowledge.
Identify your weak areas: Take a diagnostic, full-length practice test to assess your current level of understanding and identify areas where you need improvement. Analyze your performance to determine the subject areas or specific topics that require more attention.
Create a study plan: Based on your assessment, create a study plan that outlines specific goals and objectives for each study session. Break down the content into manageable chunks and allocate dedicated time for each topic.
Active reading: Instead of passively reading through the material, engage in active reading techniques. Take notes, underline important points, ask questions, and summarize the content in your own words. This helps reinforce your understanding and retention of the material.
Practice tests: Utilize practice tests to simulate the actual exam environment and help you become familiar with the format and time constraints. Take practice tests regularly to track your progress and identify areas that still need improvement.
Analyze and reflect: After completing a practice test, thoroughly analyze your performance. Identify the questions you answered incorrectly and understand the reasons behind your mistakes. Review the relevant material to strengthen your understanding of the concepts.
Review missed questions: Pay close attention to the questions you answered incorrectly during practice tests. Understand the correct answers and the underlying concepts. This process helps you reinforce your understanding and reduces the likelihood of making the same mistakes in the actual exam.
Create flashcards or concept summaries: Convert important concepts, definitions, and theories into flashcards or concise summaries. (Note: the active learning version of this is not relying on flashcards made by others, but creating your own flashcards.) Regularly review these materials to reinforce your memory and understanding of key information.
Collaborate: Consider forming study groups or finding study partners to engage in discussions and share knowledge. Explaining concepts to others and engaging in discussions can enhance your understanding and provide different perspectives.
Take breaks and review: When not taking full-length practice tests, break your study sessions into manageable intervals and take short breaks in between. During these breaks, review your notes or engage in active recall techniques to reinforce your learning.
Remember, active learning involves consistent effort and engagement. By actively applying these techniques, you can optimize your study time, enhance comprehension, and increase your chances of success on the ASWB exam. The final step is to take the exam, pass--and let us know. We love to hear it.
Happy studying and good luck on the exam!
May 29, 2023