Undergraduate Program in Plant Biology, University of Maryland

BSCI 124 Study Suggestions

Since this course is for non-science majors, most of you are probably not very familiar with its concepts and vocabulary. It's rather like learning a new language. The exams are objective, including multiple choice and matching questions. Therefore, you must be able to read a question and recognize the correct answer. The best way to study for this type of exam is to memorize the concepts and terms. This is my suggestion for how to prepare for these exams.

  1. Come to class and take notes. If you wish,use the web notes during lecture. There will be some web material that will not be covered in lecture, and some lecture material will not be found in the web notes. Coming to class is essential to get a good grade.
  2. Since it will be necessary for you to memorize lecture material, you must start your preparation weeks before the exam. Memorization takes repetition.
  3. One way to study is to take a sheet of lined notebook paper and fold itlongitudinally in half. Go to your notes and begin extracting all possible questions and answers. You write the question on one side of the page, the answer at the fold. The result is a page of questions and answers. When you fold the paper, you see only the questions.
  4. The next step is to give yourselfan exam. Beside the folded questions you have a blank piece of paper. Read the first question and WRITE the answer on the blank sheet. If you don't know the answer, turn the folded paper around and look at the answer. Then WRITE the answer several times to write it in your mind. Then go to the next question and do the same thing.
  5. At the beginning, you will know few answers.If you keep repeating this procedure, quizzing yourself and writing the answers, you will gradually learn all the material. The essential key to this technique is WRITING the answers.
  6. If you use this technique of extracting questions and writing answers, and you spend the time to learn the material, you will do well.

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