How to Cram For a Test

There are six pieces of advice for how to cram for a test that I’m going to share with you today. Now I’m not condoning cramming but sometimes life gets in the way and we can be stuck with no other alternative. So if you’re going to cram, you might as well make it as effective as possible.

Make Choices

Before you begin any studying, it’s important to narrow down on what is essential to know for your test. Go through all of the material that could be on the test and ask yourself these three questions:

  1. Is this information going to be a large part of the test?
  2. Could this information be worth a lot?
  3. Is it important for my success to know this?

Make a Plan

Organize yourself according to how much time you have to do your quick studying and how much of the material you’ve deemed as important. Figure out how much time you think you’ll need to study all that you feel is required.

Make Review Tools

If you’re really crammed for time flashcards might be time consuming but review tools like acronyms, mind maps, etc… can be effective and less time to create/use.


Studies have shown that by reciting material out-loud, people will find it easier to memorize. This is because you’re combining two type of learning visual, by reading and acoustic, by reciting. With this said, it’s a good idea to use this to your advantage while your cramming. So, recite it until you feel sick of the material!


Often times when we are left to cram for a test the feeling of stress and anxiety can be consuming. However, it can also prevent you from learning all that you can. When stress takes over it is harder for you to concentrate which is why it’s best to relax despite how difficult it might be.

If you are having problems try lighting your favourite candle while you study or listen to soothing music.

Don’t ‘Should’ On Yourself!

Something that can happen while we cram is thinking of everything that we should have done. However, this is not practical for what we need to be doing in the present moment. Our focus is best placed on the material you need to know. Besides there is nothing you can do to change the past so don’t waste time thinking about it. It’s all about focusing on the task at hand!

Like I mentioned at the beginning of the post you should try to avoid having to do this. At least now if you do end up having to cram for a test you should be very prepared!

Best of luck if you have to cram for a test!



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