Dealing with Pre-Test Jitters
The myOptions Team
When it comes to test taking, everyone experiences a dash of uneasiness. Usually, a little bit of nervousness can help you concentrate. However, when there’s too much worry, that crippling sense of self-doubt damages your test scores. We’ve compiled some tips to reduce test-time panic before, during, and after your next exam!
Try out other study habits that will give you more confidence!
Remember that people learn in different ways. When you aren’t aware of your own unique learning style, it can be challenging to find successful study strategies. There are tons of online quizzes you can take to gain insight in how you master sets of information. Here are a few approaches to shake up your study routine:
- Teach the material to someone else.
- Think of possible test questions; predicting and answering questions ahead of time will help you gain mastery of the material.
- Create a study guide that outlines main ideas and issues (complete with colors and doodles) to unite different themes together.
- Read the material you need to remember out loud.
- Try making up a song/dance that corresponds with the test material.
Be sure you are in the best possible mindset on exam day.
Unfortunately, studying is only half the battle when it comes to taking tests. It’s important to take care of yourself to secure a calm, collected presence during the assessment. Consider the following suggestions as you get in the zone:
- Get a full night's rest before the test and fuel up on healthy foods.
- Try to approach the exam with confidence and a positive attitude; you did the work, and now you have a chance to show how much you've learned!
- Do not cram on the day of your exam or talk to other students that may lead you to doubt yourself.
- Have a plan with basic test-taking strategies. Don't spend too much time on one question, read questions carefully, use process of elimination for multiple choice, and stick with your first answer.
- If you feel yourself beginning to panic, take a deep breath and remember that you are doing the best you can.
After the exam, review how you did!
If certain strategies worked, plan to use them for your next test. If there are strategies that didn't work as well as you'd hoped, go back to the drawing board! Brainstorm other methods for studying and coping with your anxiety. By discovering what does and doesn't work, you're on your way to discover your own recipe for success.
You should also reflect on how you felt.
At what point in the test-taking process is there a rush of uneasiness? For example, many people feel afraid of failing or running out of time. By pinpointing the moments of dread, it will be easier to brainstorm solutions. If the anxiety continues, talk to a teacher or counselor. They will be able to guide you and provide accommodations during test time. (i.e. extra test time, breaks during the test, etc.). We hope these tips help to keep the nervousness at bay when it comes to test taking! Good luck; you've got this!