is rough! I would suggest first making an office hours appointment to go over your exam. Take notes on what you missed - what your thought process was vs the thought process behind the answer. If there are questions you don't understand, make sure to ask your instructor to go over them for you.
Other things that I found helpful when preparing for my exams:
- Using powerpoints as a guide, not as my only study material. Most major subjects go back to the book and write your set of notes using a combination of the information from powerpoints and book knowledge.
- Form a study group and make flash cards. Take turns with your classmates quizzing each other - I found that I learned the most when I was teaching my classmates the rationale behind why they got the flash card info wrong.
- If you have a patient significant other/friend/parent have them let you explain the material to them. If you can actually teach someone the material, you are much more likely to actually understand it. When you're done explaining, have them teach back (This is great practice for when you're teaching your patients!). If they get things wrong or you leave anything out, go back and explain it again.
- If you have trouble with the question type, because a lot of people just mess up on tests because instructors model exams questions like the NCLEX to get us used to that type of question - then practice questions, questions, questions! Usually the content review at the end of chapters and study questions can be great for reinforcing how to answer these questions as well as the material.
- Get enough sleep the night before exams. Cannot tell you how many exams I spent cramming that little extra in the night before and just felt exhausted the day of, when I could have probably done just as well and have felt much better with the extra rest.
Most of all - don't beat yourself up and give yourself a little time to rest/process. We all have our bad days and if you take this opportunity to really strengthen your study skills, you can completely turn this into a chance to get into positive study habits that will help you all through the rest of school.