At the very least, aim to at least look at every question
on the test. You can’t afford to lose points because you didn’t
find the time to look at a question you could have easily answered.
You can spend an average of forty-eight seconds on each question,
though you’ll probably breeze through some in ten seconds and dwell
on others for two minutes. Knowing how to pace yourself is a critical
skill—these three guidelines should help:
Don’t dwell on any one question for too long.
If you’ve spent a couple of minutes laboring over the
question, you might just want to make a note of it and move on.
If you feel the answer is on the tip of your tongue, it might come
more easily if you just let it rest and come back to it later. Not
only is it demoralizing to spend five minutes on a single question,
but it also eats up precious time in which you might have answered
a number of easier questions.
Nail the easy questions.
As we said in the previous chapter, the test questions
get progressively harder as you go along. Nonetheless, there will
be some tough ones thrown in right at the start, and you’ll be finding
gimmes right up until the end. One of the reasons you don’t want
to dwell too long on tough questions is to ensure that you get a
look at all the questions and snatch up the easy ones. Remember:
you get as many points for correctly answering an easy question as
a difficult one. You get a lot more points for five quickly answered
easy questions than one hard-earned victory.
Skip the unfamiliar.
If you encounter a question you can’t make heads
or tails of, just skip it. Don’t sweat too hard trying to sort out
what’s going on. If you have time at the end, you can come back
to it and see if you can make an educated guess. Your first priority
should be to get all the easy questions, and your second priority
should be to work through the questions you can solve with difficulty. Unfamiliar
material should be at the bottom of your list of priorities.