There are different ways to create effective ASVAB note cards. There is no one magic bullet.
That’s because not everyone learns in the same way. Some people are more visual than others, preferring image-based memory solutions. Other people prefer written notes. Other people prefer a mix between the two. The answer, then, is this: to do what works best for you.
Even though the structure of the ASVAB note cards is up to you, the way you create material to fill in that structure is not.
Study after study shows that notes should always be written in your own words – at least as much as possible. That’s because writing material in your own words forces you to think about that material more. In other words, you’re forced to conceptualize an idea using different vocabulary. That makes your brain think more and, the more the brain thinks laterally about a topic, the more likely you are to convert short-term memory aids into long-term memory solutions. It’s those long-term memory solutions that we’re always, always attempting to create.
Of course, notes are notes. Don’t create pages and pages of material that takes forever-and-a-half to revise! Notes are small pieces of information that should trigger more information in your mind. If everything is written down, they stop becoming notes!
Of course, the same is true of images and diagrams, too.
Throughout your ASVAB test prep, you’ll invariably come across images and diagrams. Many diagrams can be found in the abstract and electronic sections of the test. Try, as best possible, to create these images / diagrams in your own inimitable way. The less copied, the better. Later in your study, try to recreate those diagrams from memory. Again, this forces you to think more and more about those images / diagrams and helps you foster, develop and grow those long-term memories.
There are three fundamental take-home points:
- The need to organize your notes
- The need to cleanly structure your study material
- The need to create that study material in an original, memorable manner
Applying these three fundamental principles maximizes your learning experience.