How to prepare for your AP Exam

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It’s LRHS AP Exam season and students are figuring out the best way to prepare to have a successful outcome. (Photo from Creative Commons)

With AP exams starting on May 6 and going through May 17, LRHS students who have taken AP classes in the past two semesters are getting prepared. 

A lot of scholars find themselves lost in their studies and don’t know how to prepare or where to start. Especially those students who were taking AP classes the first semester are struggling to refresh their memories on the different topics.

Some of the LRHS AP teachers have offered multiple review sessions, especially for first-semester students to help them prepare and recall their previous knowledge on already learned topics. These usually take place about a month or a few weeks before the exams, depending on the teacher. 

Ms. Braxton teaches AP Psychology and is an experienced staff member. She has already helped many students prepare for their final AP Exams with review sessions and study tips.

“We talk first about study strategies. I give them study guides, and then we do different review sessions after school for roughly 30 minutes,” said Braxton. For each unit, she provides her students with a study guide, which helps them get an overview of the different topics. 

Ms. Braxton helps students learn how to study and find their best study method. “We talk about chunking and about actually pacing out our studying, so we are not only focused on one day right before the test, we are focusing on doing it multiple days for a short amount of time and with practices,” said Braxton. 

She recommends her students start preparing at least two to three weeks before, along with attending the teachers’ review sessions. Ms. Braxton encourages students to study the right way which helps encode the learned information into the long-term memory. “Make sure your review is actually meaningful, so instead of just reading over your notes take it a step further and apply them. Write them in sentences, do the reads-repeat methods, something to help them memorize it,” said Braxton. 

“Attend your study sessions that your teachers offer. If you do that as a 1st-semester student, that will give you a good refresher. You should look over your material daily for 30 minutes to an hour just to review,” said Braxton. 

When asked what would be a good time to start reviewing and preparing, Braxton added: “You should at least start 2-3 weeks before to refresh, but I would always say the sooner the better.”

From a student perspective, Natalie Vargas-Kitchens, sophomore, took AP Government, AP Pre Calculus, and AP Psychology this school year and has figured out the best way for her to study and prepare for the Exams.  “I watch Heimler’s history, I look over my notes, and I go to review sessions,” said Vargas-Kitchens. 

She agrees that it can be difficult to recall everything from first-semester AP classes but encourages everyone to attend the teacher’s review sessions to refresh all the already-learned information. “For my first semester AP classes, preparing is definitely harder and I need some refreshers,” said Vargas-Kitchens. Then she added: “I think the review sessions are good that the teachers offer, they help.”

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