Obtaining an "A" on a final exam is directly related to the student's attentiveness and dedication to the class material throughout the year. Final exams often play a large role in the overall class grade, so getting a good grade on a final exam is important. A good attendance record and simply asking questions in class can significantly improve the overall class grade.
Obtain class books. Typically, you should do this prior to the start of the class, but if you neglected to do so, get the books before you begin to prepare for the final exam. Look online at the class description or contact the professor for a list of the necessary books.
Attend class. Start the class off on the right foot by attending the first class session, and attend regularly throughout the duration of the class. Introduce yourself to the professor and be sure to ask questions in class to generate discussion and clarify information. Ask for further clarification on topics that are not clear. Continue to attend class and stay on top of new assignments throughout the semester. Listen attentively to lectures and take good notes. Never miss important lectures, special guests or demonstrations. Write down lecture highlights, personal points of interest and any further discussion questions.
Find out the format for the final exam: multiple choice, essay or another format. Once you know the format, you will be better prepared for the test itself. For example, an essay exam requires that you back up your answers with facts and arguments, while a multiple choice exam only requires that you know the correct answer(s).
Meet with your professor to discuss topics that need further explanation. Showing up a few minutes earlier or staying a few minutes after class will allow you to ask further questions on unclear subjects and give you a chance to obtain more in detail information from the professor. Or, visit the professor during his scheduled office hours to discuss confusing topics.
Join a study group. Study groups allow you to think out loud and share ideas and notes with classmates. Study groups are beneficial for further understanding the class material, gaining different perspectives and participating in a support system in a social setting.
Review all homework assignments. Homework assignments are filled with potential exam material.
Study at home. Spread out study time over a couple of weeks. Cramming the night before the exam is not ideal; instead, review material a little at a time for a few weeks, and review difficult topics multiple times to reinforce the knowledge. Go over class and study group notes. Make flash cards or read over any material that needs further understanding.