Designing an exam plan is an extremely useful exercise for many students, especially if they have not had much structure around preparing for and taking exams. With the class, review the key points: Find out about the test (e.g., format, time to complete it, how it will be graded, whether all questions will have the same point value, etc.) and design an exam plan (e.g., build a schedule of review dates; develop a to-do list of major steps to get ready; read and learn material a week prior to the exam; use the final week to review and prepare using 1-hour blocks of time for review and setting hours for each block). This makes a good individual project as well as a group assignment.
In small groups, have students design a plan for the next exam in your class. The group members can present their plan to the class, sharing their strategies and why they designed that particular plan.
Use the following guidelines to have students design an exam plan for one of their courses:
- What type of exam will be used?
- What material will be covered? Is the exam cumulative?
- What types of questions will the exam contain?
- How many questions do you think there will be?
- What approach will you use to study for the exam?
- How many study sessions--and how much time--will you need?
Now, ask students to list all material to be covered and create a study schedule for the week before the exam, allowing as many as 1-hour blocks as they will need.