Creating an appropriate study plan can go a long way in reducing test stress and nerves. No matter what your learning style is, crafting and sticking with a study schedule has been shown to improve test scores. While you can study on your own, consider professional USMLE prep Chicago IL.
Schedule Your Study Time
In order to achieve a great exam score, study time must be planned out. It can be tempting to simply set a goal of hours studied per week and say you’ll study in your spare time to achieve that goal. However, true success comes from scheduling five to six hours of exam prep each week and holding that time as sacred. Studies have shown that by simply planning when and where you will study makes you up to three times more likely to achieve your goal.
Set Success Levels
It is easy to confuse activity with progress. However, not all studying will result in long term learning. It is important to set success levels and test yourself against them to know if you are making progress. Your study schedule is a great starting point, but if a topic is taking you longer to learn than the time initially scheduled, make sure to adjust your plan. No one is perfect, so expect to make mistakes and struggle a bit with learning. The good news is that studies have shown that we learn a topic better when it is more difficult. View each mistake as an opportunity to deepen your understanding of the topic.
Prioritize Self Care
Our brains and bodies require adequate periods of rest and relaxation to perform at their peak. It is easy to get caught up in the stress of the exam and want to study as much as possible. However, neglecting self-care will inhibit your ability to learn. Make sure you are getting at least six hours of sleep after a study session to allow your brain time to hardwire what you studied into your memory. It is also important to fuel your body correctly to be in your best shape come exam day. Prioritizing self-care will allow your study sessions to be as constructive as possible and have you in excellent condition come exam day.
Studying for the USMLE exam can be stressful and overwhelming. Putting a plan in place can help reduce stress and improve your test score. Make sure to follow these study tips and ask for help if needed.