How to Study for an English Final
How to Study for an English Exam

Studying for an English exam is a bit daunting for some students. Generally, these exams are skills-based and reflect the students’ ability to apply writing skills to a given context.  However, there is content involved as well. The English Department suggests the following guidelines for preparing for their English exams.

Freshmen and Sophomores have a prescribed vocabulary they must understand and be able to utilize. Reading comprehension of selected works the students read throughout the semester is evaluated too.  Literary terms also are a part of this content; not only knowing the definitions of these terms, but the ability to apply them to what has been read in order evaluate and analyze the texts in a more comprehensive way is an important skill to master.  Essays are evaluated on understanding of a given text and the ability to write in an organized and thoughtful manner—applying a myriad of ideas to the student’s own writing.

Juniors and Seniors study a variety of philosophical viewpoints that are reflected in the texts they have read; Juniors focus on American philosophy and literature, while Seniors emphasize world philosophy and literature. Upperclassmen are expected to continue the clear and controlled writing they have acquired in the lower courses and be able to understand the philosophy and concepts and apply them to their own analysis of the texts they have read.

Senior exams are two hours long, while Freshmen, Sophomores and Juniors have hour and a half exams. It is imperative that students have read the assignments throughout the semester and understood them well; in addition, they must have studied and comprehended literary and vocabulary terms and writing concepts, so as to aptly apply to them to their own composition. 

Study guides will be available from the students’ teachers during review time in December.


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