Preparation for AHSGE Test
You can earn your Alabama High School Diploma by passing the minimum number of required courses in your high school curriculum and you will also have to pass the Alabama High School Graduation Exam (AHSGE), Third edition. Successful completion of your high school coursework alone does not entitle you to earning your high school diploma. It is mandatory for you to pass this exam if you are graduating from a high school in Alabama or else you will not be able to get your high school diploma. This exam is an evaluation of how adept you are in the subject areas that have been taught to you in high school. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that one pays attention to one’s high school curriculum while at the same time prepares to take this exam as well.
Obstacles in Preparing for AHSGE
Do not underestimate the level of preparation required for passing the exam. Those who make the mistake of thinking that passing this exam is possible without adequate preparation repent later when they have to take retests for passing the same exam. There are various types of obstacles that will come in your way for passing the exam and meeting the requirements for earning your high school diploma. You should be aware of what these obstacles are so that you are able to employ strategies to overcome them.
Overconfidence in oneself can often lead to despair and disappointment if you find that the test did not turn out like you had expected it to be. Being confident in your preparation for taking the test cannot be compared to being overconfident for the same. Overconfidence amounts to taking the test lightly as you think that you will definitely be able to do well in the test and that you need not study much for it. Overconfidence for taking the AHSGE stems from the fact that the test content for the exam is of the level of the subject areas being covered in high school. However, this is a common misconception that since the test content is of the high school academics level, one need not prepare for it separately. There is a need to pay special attention to the test format and prepare for it accordingly.
Overcome the obstacle called ‘overconfidence’ by taking a couple of practice tests or attempting sample questions and see where you stand with respect to your preparation for taking this exam. Take corrective measures and prepare for the exam accordingly so that you are confident of your knowledge of the test content and you do not completely ignore preparing for the exam thinking that you are more than well prepared for the test.
- Unawareness about the test content and types of questions
A major obstacle on your way to effective preparation for taking this exam is unawareness about the test content and the types of questions that will be presented to you. Although, the test content for each subject area is of the same standard as that taught to you in high school, you should make an endeavour to understand the objectives of the subject area tests and identify the specific topics from the subject areas that have been included in the test content.
The AHSGE information bulletin called ‘Great Expectations’ can be downloaded from http://www.alsde.edu/html/home.asp, which is the website of the Alabama Department of Education. Go through this bulletin to understand what each subject area test has been designed to measure. Study the standards and objectives for each subject area. This will help you to identify the specific topics from each subject area that are being tested, the skills that are being evaluated and the skills that you are expected to demonstrate for doing well on the exam. This bulletin comes with sample questions and answer keys. Try and attempt the sample questions to get an idea of how well prepared you are to take the test and also to understand the types of questions that will be presented to you. You will find sample questions on various other websites and in study guides. Go through such questions and acquaint yourself with the types of questions that you will have to tackle so that you are not caught unawares on the day of the test.
- Test anxiety
Most test-takers are faced with test anxiety and this is one of the major hurdles on their way to success in the exam. Test anxiety leads to nervousness which eventually plays havoc with your state of mind, thereby affecting the pace with which you are preparing for the exam. A main reason for test anxiety is ignorance about the test structure and content. If you don’t know what to expect in the test, it is evident that you will be nervous and jittery leading to lack of concentration while studying for the test. Most test-takers may have prepared well for the test, but they develop test anxiety as the test date draws closer. Do not fall prey to test anxiety, especially if you have prepared well for the test. This will ruin your chances of doing well in the test as nervousness will not let you recall whatever you have learnt.
Spend time in understanding the test format and the subject area content that will be tested. Practice solving problems that are specific to the test format. Once you are thorough with what is to be expected in the test, you will gain confidence in yourself and this will help you get rid of test anxiety and you will be better prepared to take the exam.
- Time management
Lack of time management is another crucial obstacle in preparing well for this exam. You will have your first chance to take this exam in the spring of your 10th grade. Calculate the time you have at hand before you reach the time when you can take the exam. Start your preparation well in advance. Do not wait until the week before the test date to prepare for the subject area you are testing for. Work out a planned schedule in which you manage the time available at hand in such a way that you are able to attend to your high school commitments as well as prepare for the upcoming test. Lack of time management will lead to wastage of precious time and you will end up wasting more time in preparing for retests after you fail to pass the exam in the first attempt. Therefore, make effective use of whatever time you have at hand and spend maximum possible time in preparing for the exam so that you pass it in the minimum number of attempts.
Finally: 4 Keys to Effective AHSGE Preparation!
- Take a specific subject area test as and when the related subject area course completes or is on the verge of completion in high school. This way the content will be fresh in your mind and you will spend lesser time in reviewing the test content for the test that you are scheduled to take.
- Practice is the key to success! Solve as many practice problems as possible. You will find practice problems at http://www.alsde.edu/html/home.asp and in study guides. Use practice tests that come with solutions. Learn from the mistakes that you commit while answering the practice questions.
- Avoid cramming the fundamental concepts of the subject matter. Understanding the concepts is the best way to help in retaining them for a longer time and recalling them easily on the day of the test.
- Pay due attention to your high school studies. The test content for this exam is of high school level. If you are regular with your high school studies, you are bound to do well in this exam as well!
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