General Diagnostics if you did not do well on the exam:
How is your attendance? Don't expect to do well on the exam if you skip class. Even if you
have the notes from the website or from a friend.
How is your class participation? Without it, your knowledge is passive. The exam requires an
active knowledge of the material. Responding during class discussion allows you to get used
to an active response and the response of others (including me) gives you new angles on ways
to interpret discourse.
You may want to use my office hours more. Bring discourse that you are having trouble
analyzing and let me check you out.
Study with others. One of you take a piece of discourse and analyze it using some system of
vocabulary that you have learned. Others listen and then critique the answer. Maybe someone
else tries to do the same analysis and you talk about differences.
Speak up in class when we are looking at discourse. I will respond to your analysis with
The key to mastering this is to look at lots of discourse.
If you had trouble with the fill-in, definitions, and short answer, but
not with multiple choice:
You are learning to recognize the right answers, but having trouble generating them from
Make yourself a list of key terms. Write out your definitions of those terms on the paper.
Compare them to the correct answers or have a classmate critique them for you.
Do a similar exercise for systems of vocabulary. Make a list of the systems you have learned
on a piece of paper. Reproduce the terminology that makes up the system. Define each of
those terms on the paper. Compare your answers with the text or have a classmate look at
If you had trouble on the fill-in or short answer, but not on the
other "objective" parts of the exam:
You are mastering the terms individually, but not thinking about their relationship to each
Make flash cards for each term. On one side, place the term. On the other side, place
associated terms and their relationship to the main term.
As you study each term, produce its definition, but also think about what terms associate with
In your group study, do an association game. One member of the group offers a term. The
next member must give an associated term and explain the relationship. The group judges
whether they are correct or not. You can figure out a scoring system, can't you?