The Dominate Test Prep Podcast

21. Taking Your Exam At Home? Do These 3 Things for Maximum Success

April 16, 2020 Brett Ethridge / Dominate Test Prep
The Dominate Test Prep Podcast
21. Taking Your Exam At Home? Do These 3 Things for Maximum Success
Chapters
The Dominate Test Prep Podcast
21. Taking Your Exam At Home? Do These 3 Things for Maximum Success
Apr 16, 2020
Brett Ethridge / Dominate Test Prep

In response to test center closures resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, most standardized tests have released an at-home version so that candidates can stay on track to hit their application deadlines and continue applying to graduate school. While there are a lot of advantages to taking your exam from home, there's at least one glaring disadvantage -- and you need to make sure that you're preparing accordingly so that you can overcome it and maximize your test-day results.

If you're going to be taking your standardized test from the comfort of your own home, this episode is a must-listen. Specifically, we discuss:

  • The biggest downside to taking a high-stakes exam from home, and the mental shift you need to make to overcome it
  • How to recreate the "live" exam experience during your practice sessions
  • The "Know thy Enemy" approach to planning ahead and preparing for all test-day contingencies
  • How to "win the morning" of your exam, including an unusual but incredibly effective tactic for putting yourself in the right frame of mind to perform your best
  • Whether or not you should opt for the at-home test in the first place or just wait for test centers to open again
  • And more!

The good news is that the substance of the exams themselves remain largely unchanged, so everything you've been doing to prepare to this point is still relevant. The major difference, of course, is that you will be taking the real thing from home. If you implement the three strategies we teach in this episode, you'll be in a great position to come out on top!


FROM THE MAILBAG

For some bonus content toward the end of the show, we also answer the following listener question: "How much time do you suggest people spend looking over answers to questions they got wrong or even those they got right [when practicing]?”

We share some helpful tips for figuring out your strengths and weaknesses and keeping your eye on the prize when reviewing your practice results. Enjoy!


RESOURCES

  1. GMAT - Official Details about the Online GMAT Exam
  2. GRE - Official Page for the At-Home GRE
  3. LSAT - Official LSAT Flex Information Page
  4. LSAT - Top 10 Questions about LSAT Flex
  5. Study: "Dress for Success: How Clothes Influence Our Performance"


A DOSE OF MOTIVATION

“I’m a firm believer in that you play the way you practice.” -- Larry Bird

Show Notes Transcript

In response to test center closures resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, most standardized tests have released an at-home version so that candidates can stay on track to hit their application deadlines and continue applying to graduate school. While there are a lot of advantages to taking your exam from home, there's at least one glaring disadvantage -- and you need to make sure that you're preparing accordingly so that you can overcome it and maximize your test-day results.

If you're going to be taking your standardized test from the comfort of your own home, this episode is a must-listen. Specifically, we discuss:

  • The biggest downside to taking a high-stakes exam from home, and the mental shift you need to make to overcome it
  • How to recreate the "live" exam experience during your practice sessions
  • The "Know thy Enemy" approach to planning ahead and preparing for all test-day contingencies
  • How to "win the morning" of your exam, including an unusual but incredibly effective tactic for putting yourself in the right frame of mind to perform your best
  • Whether or not you should opt for the at-home test in the first place or just wait for test centers to open again
  • And more!

The good news is that the substance of the exams themselves remain largely unchanged, so everything you've been doing to prepare to this point is still relevant. The major difference, of course, is that you will be taking the real thing from home. If you implement the three strategies we teach in this episode, you'll be in a great position to come out on top!


FROM THE MAILBAG

For some bonus content toward the end of the show, we also answer the following listener question: "How much time do you suggest people spend looking over answers to questions they got wrong or even those they got right [when practicing]?”

We share some helpful tips for figuring out your strengths and weaknesses and keeping your eye on the prize when reviewing your practice results. Enjoy!


RESOURCES

  1. GMAT - Official Details about the Online GMAT Exam
  2. GRE - Official Page for the At-Home GRE
  3. LSAT - Official LSAT Flex Information Page
  4. LSAT - Top 10 Questions about LSAT Flex
  5. Study: "Dress for Success: How Clothes Influence Our Performance"


A DOSE OF MOTIVATION

“I’m a firm believer in that you play the way you practice.” -- Larry Bird

speaker 0:   0:00
I'm a firm believer in that you play the way you practice Larry Bird. Hello and welcome to the Dominate Test Prep podcast. I am Bread Ethridge, founder of Dominate Test Prep and the host of this podcast. And in this episode, I am going to share three things with you three tips that I think will really help you if you are going to be taking your standardized test from hope. So the context of this, obviously, is the Corona virus pandemic. If you're listening to this at the time of the recording of this episode, a lot of low. A lot of testing centers, not local test centers, test centers worldwide are closed because of the Corona virus. And so most of the standardized tests have figured out a way to be able to offer the test at home. Like the at home addition, You can register and take the GM at the G R E. The L sat from the comfort of your own home, and yet that presents some unique challenges and things that we need to think about if you are going to maximize your success, and that's what we're gonna talk about. So I have three things that I think will really help you. And of course, even if you're listening to this down the road, I think there's a decent chance that some of the test will end up being permanently, you know, having an at home option available permanently. You know, there's a good chance, even years from now what I'm gonna be talking about, we'll still be relevant. And frankly, what I'm going to be talking about are still going to be good. Practice is for you, even if you opt to take the test at a testing center, because maybe your local test center is open or you're not scheduled to take the test for a little while and you'll be able to take it at the test center again in the near future when they open back up. So that's what we're gonna be talking about. And I'll start by saying that as a general rule, the tests themselves that at home version of the different tests are the same. I mean, are there small differences? Yes, right. The G. Mack got rid of the essay on there. They're at home version. Everything else is the same. The G R E is pretty much identical. The l sad is a shorter version, but the same sections. You just take fewer of those sections. So it's all of the same stuff, right? So in general, how do you prepare for your standardized test the same way I am always teaching to prepare for your standardized test, Right? So go back and listen to earlier episodes in this podcast. I've got a bunch of free videos up on my YouTube channel. Obviously, you consign it for one of our comprehensive courses, where I teach you everything you need to know to prepare for your tests. All of that stuff is the same. But what is the major difference between the at home version of your exam and the normal quote unquote like test center version of your exam? One very simple but obvious thing. The fact that you are going to take it at home, and so that's where we want to focus, right? And and for the most part, that is actually a positive right. If we think about the pros and cons, there are a lot of pros. It's a familiar environment. Shorter commute literally walked down your steps And there you go. You're with your test center, right? That often leads to less anxiety. Cleaner bathrooms, maybe. Hopefully, hopefully they're cleaning bathrooms at your house. Men at the testing center. But while there are a lot of good things, there is also one glaring con. And that is the fact that the at home exam is at home, and that makes a big difference. And you might be thinking, How is that a con? Well, I'm gonna talk about that, and we want to focus on that. And my three tips really speak two that and how to handle preparing for and taking your exam from the comfort of your own home. We give you a quick analogy first to kind of set the stage. And this is something I experienced myself in a totally different realm. But in the CrossFit world, so a lot of you know that I like to do crossfit. I play lots of sports. But when I was first getting into crossfit, I lived down in both Bogota, Colombia, and I decided to do competitions, right. So when I do something, I go all in. I didn't want to just go to the classes every day. I said, Hey, I'm gonna actually compete and show up and do competitions. And the first competition I ever did was way across town and I got all, like, pumped up for it. I planned in advance. I literally scouted it out because Bogota wasn't very familiar to me. And so I took a cab up there to see where it was. I didn't want to get up the morning of the of the competition and like get lost. I left way early because traffic can be bad in Bogota on. So I got there super early, packed my bag the night before, I prepped out all the food that I was going to eat, got there plenty early, checked in early, scouted it out. You went to the stretching area like all of that stuff. I pre thought everything I thought about contingencies. I showed up really early the morning of, got all prepped and stretched and ready, and warmed up, and I had a great competition. I mean, I wasn't very good at CrossFit at the time, but for my ability level, I did great. Crushed had a phenomenal experience. A year or two later, I guess a year later or so I was still living in Bogota and did another competition at my local gym. They call it a box in CrossFit, and it's literally within walking distance was within walking distance of my apartment. It was the gym where I went every single day, super familiar environment. But there was a certain complacency that really just kind of set in for that competition. And I can't explain it other than to say that. I think I just assumed everything would be fine because I was familiar with it. It was my home gym and and I literally I kind of I got up and had just kind of normal, lazy morning the morning of the competition. I was still kind of excited, a little bit nervous for the competition. But But I remember showing I was like, Oh, I just have to walk five minutes across this park and I'll be at the CrossFit, you know, a competition. But I got there and there were still it was a little different because it was set up differently and there were tons of people around and I had to check in and all of those types of things, and I didn't show up early enough, so I wasn't really stretched and wasn't really warmed up. And and there were all things that were within my control, but just mentally it was a little bit different, and I did not have a great competition. And I think the same type of thing can happen with respect to the at home standardized test you're taking the at home g r e the at home g Mathey at home l sat. Yes, you are going to be in a more familiar environment, and yet the risk is the tendency is the human nature is that you may be a little bit too complacent. There is something to be said for that edge, that mental edge, that excitement that builds on game day, where you need to physically leave your house and go to the testing center and and like, you're physically moving yourself to a new environment, creating this mental awareness that something big is about to happen, and performance usually follows from that. And you are not going to have that experience when you're taking your test from home unless you create that experience and so That's what we're gonna talk about, right? So my three tips all kind of revolve around how to address what I view as the biggest rest the biggest con, if you will, of the at home test. So with all of that said, let's go ahead and dive in. My first major tip for you, then, is to treat your practice as much like the real thing as you possibly can. Now that's something I have always said. I always tell my students when they're gonna take a practice test, for example, to try to simulate the rial environment as much as possible and, you know, turn up distractions and block out the time. And don't pause the exam like a lot of obvious things. But in this case, your practice tests will be almost exactly like the real thing because you will literally be taking the real thing at home. Previously, your practice tests were a simulation of the real thing, because obviously you weren't going to a real testing center. I know sometimes my students will go to a library, so maybe there's a little ambient noise. Could sometimes the test center have a little bit of commotion going around and things like that. So you do all of those things when you're taking your normal practice tests. But now your practice has really are like the real thing you are going to take. And so it's more important than ever because you have the opportunity of making your practice test feel like the real thing, which will make the real thing easier for you and Wes anxious for you. So some obvious things. You want to take your practice tests at the same time of day as the real one If you haven't signed up yet. Most of the tests are being offered 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you'll have the opportunity to choose when you want to take it. Just figure that out. Do you want to do it on a Saturday morning? You know, I know it kind of feels like ground hog date around here these days, where weekdays and weekends all kind of blur together because we're quarantined and we're at home. So maybe it doesn't matter. Maybe you can take it like on a Tuesday right during the middle of the day. Maybe you can't because you're still working and you're working from home. So just figure out when you are going to take the real thing. Try to do your practice tests at the same time of day. Turn off those distractions like I talked about, pretend it's the real thing. Silence. Your cell phone turned off notifications all of those types of things Ask your family maybe to give you a little bit of a break. If you have a roommate or family members, tell him to get out of the house for a little while, and I know that could be hard during quarantine. But tell him to go take like, three or four long laps around the neighborhood with the dog. You know, whatever you need to do to create that test day environment, prep your test area. I'll get to this here in tip number two, but figure out like what? What are the requirements of your testing environment? Clear out a table where you are going to take the exam. Make sure your environment meets all the specifications and frankly, not only do your practice tests in that environment, but even just your practice session so that you get familiar with it. I wouldn't lounge on the couch, right? A lot of times, it's easy to kick back on the couch and set your book up on your lap while you have. You know the TV playing in the background and you're doing a block of practice problems. Well, why not even do your practice sets in the same type of environment as the real thing, where you sit in a normal chair at a table and you literally sit down and are working as if you're taking the real exam. Get the test environment set up early. Get your hands on some laminated scratch paper or dry erase boards. Whatever is going to mimic the requirements for your particular exam, I know the requirement for all of the exams that I'm familiar with. At least that you can take from home is that you will be able to erase your scratch paper quote unquote at the end of the exam. Right that that's for test security. That's to make sure there's no cheating or you're not. You're not like taking practice questions and sharing a room with your questions from the real thing and then taking them next door and giving them to your neighbor, your friend, who is also going to be taking the exam later. And so they want to physically see you erase your notes at the end of the exam. And here's another fun little tip for you. One of the unique things about these at Home exams is that they're going to be Proctor DDE in most cases, live proctor, meaning somebody is going to be watching you through your computer. Now there's some artificial intelligence built in, right. They're gonna be looking looking for eye movement. And like all of those types of things, it's kind of a weird. It's kind of a weird thing to think about, but why not? Zoom set up like a zoom meeting or face time A friend while you're taking what Your practice test so that you get used to the idea of this little window up on your screen with somebody watching you. Now your friend doesn't have to sit there and watch you for three hours, but just knowing that they're there and maybe every hour they kind of pop back in and say, Hey, how's it going or whatever you know, and you just kind of get used to that. So everything you conduce to replicate the rial exam as much as possible will help you. All right, so that leads me to tip number two. And that is to know thy enemy. Know thy enemy, right? That's a term from the art of war. Basically, speaking to the idea that the army or the general that prepares the best that pre thinks every possible contingency understands the lay of the land surveys the battlefield in advance knows exactly in pre thinks what what they're about to encounter on the battlefield, that army usually wins. And so, yes, I am calling your standardized test your enemy on. I want you to know your enemy. But what I'm really saying is get to know exactly what you're in store for and plan for contingencies. And the main goal for this. Yes. You wanted to help you help the whole experience go more smoothly. But mostly we're doing it because it will help with anxiety. The more we know what we're in store for the less anxious we are about that thing, right? As a general rule, I've often advised my students to drive to their testing center sometime before the real thing, just to get familiar with it, to see what it's going to look like. What's the building gonna look like? Walk into the lobby, make sure you know the route. Kind of like I did with that first CrossFit competition. Same idea here. But what you need to do is you need to go to the website of your respective test, and I'll do my best to post a bunch of links below kind of the main official site for each of the major tests, with the details about the test taking environment and the technological requirements and all of all, of the things you need to know about the at home online version of your exam. But you want to read that page forwards and backwards. You want to click on the frequently asked questions link. You want to make sure you understand exactly what your test taking environment needs to look like. What are they going to expect when you, you know, first get started on the proctor is asking you questions, and you have to show your I D and you have to do a 360 degree of your room that you're taking the test in with your You know, your built in camera, like all of those things you want to read, and you want to make sure you know what to expect. Obviously you want to test your equipment. You want to make sure, obviously, that your equipment is acceptable and that you can actually take the at home version. But assuming you've done all of that, is your equipment actually working and you want to do this the day before right the night before? You don't want to be scrambling around it into stuff the morning of the exam. That's the type of thing that increases your anxiety. It doesn't alleviate your anxiety, right? I know for me with my laptop computer, the computer, I would probably take the at home exam on if I could. It's got kind of a wonky video camera, like if I've had my my computer on for too long, Sometimes the camera just won't connect. If I try to do a zoom meeting or something like that, the little light just won't turn on. It won't connect the camera, and it doesn't mean the camera's broken. It just means usually what I have to do it. I just have to restart The computer assumes I restart the computer. Everything's working. Finding it, I don't know. It's the old computer, but that's just the reality of my technology. So I would want to do that restart the night before. I would want to make sure that the green light comes on. Maybe I even do a dry run of a quick zoom meeting or a face time meeting with a family member just to make sure all of that stuff is working well, this is what I mean about knowing that enemy planning for contingent contingencies, right? Setting up your environment early night, we talked about that. I would set up your home environment as soon as you pretty much know you're going to take your exam from home so that you can practice in that environment. But then, even the morning of especially right, turn off the ringer on your landline phone. Turn off notifications on your computer so you don't have pop ups while you're taking your exam. Ah, prepare your snacks and your drinks in advance so that you don't have to scramble around in your refrigerator on your break time. All of these things are the things you want to think through end while most of the exams are going to allow not you to cancel your scores and retake it. If there is a major technology glitch, I would still plan. For what? If your Internet glitches out during the middle of the exam for me, I would have my mobile hot hot spot set up on my phone and ready and waiting, just in case, right. If the Internet goes out, I want to quickly you reconnect through my hot spot. Why? Because I've spent so much time preparing. Maybe I'm already halfway through the exam. But that point, why do I want to press the reset button hat and have to do it all over again, right? I'd rather recon take a minute or two to reconnect to my hot spot and keep going and finished the exam in that point. Then waste the time and the money and the effort and all of that. So these are the things you want to think through that will help you have success on test day. Which brings us to point number three, and I think this might be the most important of the points, right? This is the point that most addresses that quote unquote con that we talked about early on. The fact that, yes, it's great that you can take it from home, and yet we need to make sure we don't fall into that complacency. And so my tip tip number three is you want to win the morning when? The morning of your exam. I'm a big believer in morning routines. I try to follow the same morning routine from myself every day in terms of quiet time, meditation, breakfast, exercise, movement, all of those things. Like what? I read all of those things I try to do on a consistent basis because I know that if I win the morning, I tend to win the day. How can you win the morning of your standardized test Because you want to be mentally sharp. That complacency I talked about from being in your home environment can either work against you or it can work for you. What, you don't want to D'oh is kind of wandered downstairs in your pajamas the morning of your in exam pop. Open your computers. If you're about to check email like or you're about to check social media and you're really about to take, Ah, high stakes test. It's game day, and yet you're treating it like it's just any old other day in your living room. We don't want to do that. Don't lower yourself into a false sense of comfort, right? So how could we do that? We want you to be mentally primed mentally different, mentally sharp when you sit down to take your exam, and I have three kind of three tips for you on how to do that. Number one is take a cold shower the morning of your exam. You might be thinking Brett like, Are you crazy? Go back and listen to Episode 17 of the Dominate Test prep podcast, where we talked about nutrition tips for mental focus and clarity. But in that episode, the doctor I interviewed actually talked about the benefits of a cold shower for prime ing the pump for getting the blood flowing for getting blood flowing to the brain right, and you don't have to take the whole showers a cold shower, right? I usually say, Start with the Hotch and I tried to do this regularly myself. Just take your normal old shower and then, at some point, crank the temperature to cold and stay in the freezing cold water as long as you can. Even if that's 10 seconds, then turn it warm again and finish your shower. But even just that quick, hot, too cold, the hot I can help you. So that's kind of tip number one. You want to get yourself pumped up mentally ready? Have a hearty, nutritious breakfast again. Episode 17 talks a lot about that, but you want to make sure you have enough fuel in your body so that you know your stomach's not rumbling during the exam, but also see that you have enough nutrition for your brain to feed on. Obviously, your brain uses a lot of energy when it's thinking and concentrating hard, so you want to make sure eat well and be hydrated. We talked about that in Episode 17 but here's a fun tip for you. So kind of my point number three toe win the morning is dress up. Dress up for your exam. Don't wander down the steps or wander into your living room in your pajamas just because you can put on something nice. Suit up, literally. Potentially. Where a suit. There are so many studies and all linked to just at least one of them in the show notes their studies showing the benefits. How much better? You focus your abstract thinking you're focused level when you dress up. And actually, there was an interesting study I read that said, If you wear a lab coat somehow, it actually leads to increased focus. So I don't know if you have happen to have a lab coat sitting around your house and then put on your lab coat. But if not literally, you know at least nice pants and a button down shirt. Maybe wear a suit. If you're a guy, a suit. If you're a girl, does. I guess there are female dress suits as well, because mentally it puts you in a different frame of mind. Psychologically, you know that something is different about today. It is game day, and your performance will reflect that. Oh, and here's one final kind of bonus Ninja move for you, right? So I guess maybe like point number four, ordinarily you would be getting in your car and driving to a test center, which, in and of itself helps to shift your mindset right. You have that driving time to kind of build yourself up. Maybe you listen to some good music. Maybe you meditate a little bit. You do deep breathing exercises while you're driving to the testing center. Why not do that? Even if you're taking your test from home, get in your car, pull out of your driveway, drive around the block a couple times, pull back into your driveway, walked back into your house, open your computer and start your test right. It may seem like a small thing. You might think that's just kind of weird, but I guarantee you it will shift that focus. Anything you can do to help make the at home test day experience seem seem more legit. Like Maur like It's the real thing, the better off you will be. And so I think that kind of drunk drive your test centre Anyway, your test center just happens to be your house. So there you go. I hope you have found these tips helpful just to Reese. Recap in to summarize Tip number one is Treat your practice as much like the real thing as you possibly can. Tip number two. Know thy enemy. That basically means make sure there are no surprises on test day plan. Read. Figure out. You know what you're gonna do in different situations and then finally, number three. When? The morning. Now, before we wrap up, I do want to address one other question I have been getting. It's a question you may have a CZ well, and that is, should you even take the at home version of the test? Or, if your test centre's open, should you just go ahead and take it at the test center anyway? Or should you wait until test Centre's open back up again? Or should you take advantage of the at home exam? Some of you may already have just an intuition about what, one way or the other, right? You just you love the fact that you can take it at home. It's a no brainer. It's what you've been waiting your whole life for. Absolutely. I'm gonna take this thing and hope, but others of you are maybe a little bit conflicted. You realize that there are advantages, but you also realize their realize that there are some unknowns and some disadvantages. What should you do? My advice is, don't go out of your way to do one or the other. Now, from a practical standpoint, some of you may not even be able to take the at home version of your exam. Maybe you're in a country where it's not available. Maybe you don't have a computer that had that meets the requirements. Maybe the Internet, where you are isn't very good. And so it's just gonna be better for you to go to an actual testing center. And that's what I mean by don't go out of your way to do one or the other. I wouldn't recommend going out and buying several $100 piece of software just to be able to put on your computer so that you can take the at home version. Just go to a test center or wait until you can go to the test center right on the flip side. If you weren't really thinking you were going to take your exam for a few months anyway, I wouldn't scramble to try to prepare faster so that you can take advantage of this window of opportunity to take it at home. The advantages of taking it from home aren't that great that you're somehow magically gonna get, like, a way better score from home. Just stick with your current study schedule, and I think that's really my take home message for you. If you are feeling ready to take your exam, take it. Are your practice test scores trending in the right direction? Have your last couple of practice test scores been in the ballpark of what you want on the real thing. Then you're ready. Go ahead and take it at home. Why not get it over with? You have been. You have been preparing and working and studying for this moment for months, probably in most cases. For some of you. Longer than that, why put it off any longer than you have to. They have given you an option to go ahead and take it at home. Get it out of the way, get it done with turn your attention to the rest of your applications and go off to graduate or business school. Get it done with right rep. The band aid off. On the flip side, like I mentioned, if you're not ready, if your practice test scores aren't where you need them to be, if you're just starting your prep, maybe you just signed up for my course. Stick with the plan. Stick with the syllabus, stick with study plan and when you're ready, see what the landscape is. Maybe you don't have the option to take it home anymore at that point. Oh well. No harm, no foul. Everybody's Since the history. Since the beginning of time off, standardized tests have been taking it to the test center. Your experience will be the same as everybody else, except for the few people who, during this very narrow window of time, happened to be able to take it from home. So what? Like just go take it in to test center. Not a big deal, but if it that point, it's also available at home, then you can choose. Do you want to take it in a test center? Do you want to take it at home? The point is, what's most important is are you ready? Because the exam itself is going to be the same exam. So are you ready? If you are then you have a choice, right? So that's pretty much it. I wouldn't lose too much sleep over it. If you're ready, take it if you're not ready, Wait. See what the lay of the land is when you already and make your decision. At that point, way just went over a few tips for you specific to preparing for the at home version of your exam. But how about some General Prep tips? Right? We're going to do a from the mailbag segment. I know it's been a while, mostly because I have spent the last few episodes interviewing guests and they were long episodes, and so we just didn't do him. But I've gotten a lot of questions from my students from people who just reach out to me direct messages through social media. And so I wanted to go ahead and address one of them that I think is gonna help you, and it's from an She wrote me and she said, It seems kind of silly, but how much time do you suggest people spend looking over answers to questions they got wrong or even those they got? Right end quote. So that's a good question and this speaks to kind of the practice piece of things as you're preparing for your exam. Feedback is important. Review is important. You don't want to sit down into a block to practice questions and then go turn on the TV and go check social media and, like, not do anything with the results. It's very important to go back through the questions you've got wrong and even some of the ones you got right. But But here's my answer to you and and the answer The question about how much time is spend just a CZ much time as it takes to figure out why you got the question wrong and make sure you can get it right in the future. No more, No more and no less. Now let's review something we have talked about before. And that is why do you get questions wrong in the first place? And generally you get questions wrong for one of three reasons. There's a content knowledge gap like you just didn't know how to do it. You didn't remember how to do the underlying math for that particular question or you didn't You didn't know the grammar rule or you didn't know howto analyze that argument effectively. So that's there's a content gap at that point. Well, that tells you where to go back and revisit some some video lessons. If you're taking my course, go back to the section where you can watch the video lessons on that topic again. Maybe you go to 1/3 party outside website. You go back to a book, but be careful. Don't get lost in the weeds. Don't chase it down. Three hours of rabbit holes on you know, some generic website that has a bunch of free videos and blonde posts and things like that. Because, as you've heard me say, over and over again, your objective isn't to become an algebra major. For example, if you're taking the G matter g r e or the S a T a test that has a math section, your goal isn't to become an algebra major. Your goal is to figure out how to get right answers on G. Matt G. R E s A. T. Algebra questions. And those are two different animals. So you don't want to spend 10 hours watching a bunch of Khan Academy videos about algebra. You want to go back, watch specific videos about that particular question type, and make sure you understand why you got yours wrong and how to get them right in the future. And the same goes even for questions. Oh, let me go back and revisit kind of the other two reasons, right? So you might get questions wrong because you didn't know the underlying content. You might get questions wrong because you didn't apply the proper strategy. So often times there are there are better ways, more efficient ways. Better methodologies to answer the particular question. And again, that's where a prep course, a coach, a Tudor comes into play, right? And sometimes you need feedback for that piece, often times for the for the content piece. It's easy to say, Oh, I just forgot how to do this type of geometry question. Okay, I'm gonna go back and watch a bunch of videos about geometry. Fine. Make sure their specific to your standardized tests. But what if there were a shortcut or what if on a quantitative comparison question or a data sufficiency question, there were certain a certain starting point? Ah, kind of inroads to that question, a certain strategy for that question type that you're just missing where that you forgot. Right? So the strategy peace often requires Maur outside eyeballs for lack of a better way of saying it. But so maybe you need to go back to the content. Maybe you are just missing, like a strategy piece. Or maybe you just made a careless error. In that case, I would recommend going back to Episode 11 of the Dominate Test Prep podcast, where I shared nine ways to avoid making careless errors. So, yes, absolutely go back and figure it out. But I would stay fairly big picture. You know, I know a lot of people teach the idea of creating error logs and these complex spread sheets where you keep track of every question you ever do during your practice sessions, and you categorize them by the different question types and that will somehow tell you where your strengths and your weaknesses are. You have a pretty good idea. If you take a practice test and you look at all the questions you got wrong, use pretty easy to look at them and say, Oh, I got a lot of data sufficiency questions wrong on the G. Matt, for example. I guess I'd better work on data sufficiency a little bit more. Okay, fine. Yes. And most of the data sufficiency questions wrong. I that I got wrong had to do with ratios. Okay, so now I know I need to work on ratios and data sufficiency more generally fun. You can stay fairly high level, get a sense of your strength and weaknesses just by reviewing your own wrong answers. And don't get lost in the weeds. And yes. And you also want to sometimes review questions you've got right if you got it right. But you kind of got lucky and again there to a lot of times. You know that as you're going through when you're doing a black of practice questions, put a little star next to the questions that you just weren't totally sure about. And then you go back and check the answers and you say, Oh, I got that right. Oh, but I have a star next to it. So, yes, the answer is D I pick d Maybe was a wild guess. Maybe I still just kind of got lucky. There's gotta be a better way to go over with your instructor with your tutor. Go back to some videos. Make sure treat it like a wrong answer. If you're not absolutely 100% confident in that answer than go back and treat it like a wrong answer, that makes sense. So here we are, at the end of another episode of the Dominate Test prep podcast. I hope you have found it helpful. I hope you have found these three tips incredibly helpful for helping you prepare if you are going to take your exam from home. And here's what I would love Thio here I would I want to hear from you. If you end up taking your exam from home, please email me Brett at Dominate test prep dot com. I'll put my contact information in the show notes below. I am incredibly curious to hear how this goes. I think it's a very interesting experiment. I totally understand why all of these exams have scrambled to go online, and I think it's great that they did. People need to continue to meet their application requirements at deadlines, right? Just because kind of the world has pressed the pause button doesn't mean that our dreams and our goals need to be put on pause indefinitely. So you need to go out and take your exam. Continue applying, go to graduate school, go to business school, go to law school, go out and make a positive difference in the world. They're giving you the opportunity to continue that to go ahead and take this piece of things. The standardized test piece of things from hope. Great. But I'm very curious to hear What was it like? What were your nerves like? Was it more comfortable? Less comfortable? Were you more anxious? Less anxious. Were there any technical glitches? Right. I'm sure they're gonna be some some learning curves and bumps and bruises along the way. I'm sure they will be incredibly forgiving if their issues and technical issues and let you reschedule and and all of those types of things. But I truly hope you have a great experience. And frankly, if it goes well, I have a feeling they're going to stick around long term. So if that ends up being the case great, all of these tips are still gonna be relevant for you. But I would love to hear from you so again should be a quick email. Brett A Dominate test prep dot com or or post on our social media Let us know how your experience Waas Now your action item for the week I always close with an action item is go to the official website of your standardized test to the page, where they provide the details about the online version, the at home version of your exam, and read it right. Step one. Make sure you qualify, see if you qualify. But once you're committed to taking the at home version, or even if you're just trying to decide, do I want to deal with it? Like maybe you just decide? I don't like the idea of a live proctor taking over my computer and watching me take the test, so I am just not going to take it from home. Fine. But you need to figure out if that's even the situation with your exam. How does the proctor ring situation work? What are the requirements? Do you meet those requirements? Know thy enemy right? That's what you can start doing right now. So, as I mentioned, I'll try to post a CZ many of those links in the show notes. As I can go to the Web sites, figure all that information out. That's an action step you can be doing right now. And then. Of course, the other action items just to keep prepping. As per usual, the exam is the same. You need to learn the same content you need to learn the same strategies you need to practice. Practice, practice right, the three components of the success triad that I always talk about. So just keep doing those things as well. And I'm confident you'll be ready to dominate your standardized test, whether it's in a test center down the road or at home in the very near future. Subscribed to us like us. Thank you for listening. Thank you for continuing to support the Dominate test Prep podcast. Leave a review. A written review were starting to get more written reviews. I love that I love the five stars, so definitely leave us a five star review. That's easy. You just click on the five stars, takes five extra seconds to go ahead and type something out, but would love to hear your written review shared with your friends. Anybody you know, who's taken the online online at home version of their test. I think they would benefit from what I had to share a CZ. Well, so share this with them. Good luck. Get out there, Dominate your exam, and we will see you next time on the Dominate test Prep podcast. Take care, everyone.