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Health Professions Test Prep Guide: Home

Before You Start

Test prep guides are in high demand, so you will not always be able to get a physical copy from the library.  Ebooks are available for the GRE only.  If you borrow a test guide, be curteous and return it when it is due.  To request a guide from another library, search "All I-Share Libraries" in the I-Share catalog.

For the GRE and MCAT, you can find more study guides and help at the Learning Center in the Frick Center.

Test Prep Tips

Successful test preparation requires long-term planning and a significant time commitment.  Ideally, your test prep should start as soon as you decide to pursue a health profession, but that doesn't mean breaking out the study guide quite yet.  This is a very rough guide for staging your test prep- you will need to adjust the timeline based on your own situation.

When you decide to pursue a health profession

When the test is in sight (1 year to 3 months, depending on the test)

  • Go to the test's official website 
    • find out how when and where the test is held
    • find out how much it costs
    • sign up for the test
  • Acquire test prep materials
    • your course work should be your main form of preparation
    • we do not recommend signing up for test prep classes- these can be very expensive and are not offered at Elmhurst 
    • depending on the test, the library or learning center may have study guides
    • if you can, purchase a test prep guide (will cost anywhere from $25 to $90)
  • Set goals and structure your preparation time
    • enlist a study buddy to help stick to your plan, even if you don't study together
  • Do at least one practice test
    • do as practice test in a realistic setting (such as in a computer lab), not in the comfort of your home
  • Address test anxiety
    • don't be afraid to talk to your peers- almost everyone experiences some form of test anxiety
    • if you have severe test anxiety, talk to your doctor

The week before the test

  • Scout out the test location
    • you may want to go to the test location ahead of time so you are aware of how much time you will need for travel
    • if you can, see the room the test is held in; pay attention to whether it is hot or cold, too bright, too noisy, etc., so you can plan on being comfortable
    • find out whether you are allowed food and drink in the test room, or if there are lockers available
  • Sleep extra every night (at least 8-10 hours)
  • Buy or make portable food and drink for the test day

Test day

  • Eat well- thinking takes a lot of energy
    • don't change your diet suddenly (if you need caffeine, have it)
    • avoid a sugar crash during the test (avoid sweets- unless you need those to function)
  • Dress comfortably, in layers
  • Bring earplugs or headphones (if allowed) to minimize distractions
  • Consider wearing a hat or hoodie for privacy and protection from harsh lighting

General Test Taking Resources