These three test taking techniques may seem odd, but they can work together to give your test scores a little boost. They certainly don’t take the place of diligent study and preparation, but they can help give you the extra something you need to get through a tough exam.
1) Chew Gum
A study cited by Live Science found that chewing gum for a few minutes before a test can boost your score. The scientist suspect the chewing action increases blood to your brain which can give your memory a little boost. The effect wears off about twenty minutes after chewing, so be ready to work quickly. Also, gum chewing does not help if you chew throughout the test. Not only will it annoy your neighbors, but it also takes mental energy to keep up that chewing. So pop in a piece of gum 10-15 minutes before the test, then throw it away right before the test begins.
2) Choose A Scent To Jog Your Memory
It is also suspected that you can use your senses to jog your memory. Scent can be a powerful tool for association. You can partner this technique with the one above, and use a uniquely flavored gum that you only chew while studying. Then, chew this gum right before the exam. The scent and taste may help you recall the material you studied during the time you chewed the same flavor. Remember not to chew this gum all the time, but only when you are studying for a specific subject or exam. Otherwise you will associate all kinds of things with the scent, not just the things you want to remember for that particular exam.
3) Do a Memory Dump
An article from Education Corner suggests using a technique called a memory dump. This tool will work really well with the above tips that can help jog your memory, but the effects are often short lived. If the test has some space where you can write and make notes, quickly jot down anything you have memorized that you will need to remember for the test. Equations, dates, and vocabulary words are examples of the kinds of things you could write down quickly, while you remember them. Then you won’t be stressed about recalling facts, and you will have more mental energy for critical thinking and problem solving.
Try these unusual techniques for improving your test score. It is not likely that you will make massive gains, but even just a few points can make a significant difference in your grade. Don’t forget that these tips should be used in addition to thorough test prep, not instead of test prep.