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  • Chris Scoggins

5 Tips to Beat Test Anxiety

Test anxiety is something that can affect even the best of students. What’s worse is that it can impact those that may even know the material well; they just aren’t suited to the format of the exam. Luckily, there are ways you can beat test anxiety whether you are an ace student, or have a history of struggling with exams.

Test Prep anxiety
Is your mind at a grid lock?

- Prepare Well:

Half of the reason that students become anxious happens during the exam, when students are unsure of their answers and create anxiety for themselves. The best way to avoid this is to know the material. Knowing the material will give you confidence during the exam that will help erase your anxieties. As you continue to answer questions, it will continue to raise your own confidence. If you walk into an exam unprepared, no practice in helping test anxiety will save your grade, so study up.

- Calm Down:

It’s easier said than done, we know. When you’re anxious, and maybe even panicking, calming down is the last thing on your mind. However, it’s essential to controlling the test instead of letting the test control you. To combat this, you should develop a practice for calming yourself down, and that process may be different for everyone. Make it something simple, such as, when you come to a problem you don’t know the answer to, close your eyes, breathe deep and take a mini-break for 10 seconds. Figuring out a method that works for you will help you keep you in control of the test.

- Prioritize Your Time:

Know what you know. A lot of anxiety comes from an imposed time limit with exams. The best way to defeat this is to prioritize your time to make sure you’re answering the questions that you know and have the highest point value, rather than wasting your time answering questions that you know you don’t know, or have a lower overall point value. Manage your time, manage the test.

- Train for the Format:

Tests come in a variety of forms, whether it’s an essay, multiple-choice, short answer, or all three. All can cause anxiety, so know what you’re walking into and train for it. If multiple-choice is your problem, work toward the best way to eliminate answers, for essays, practice writing clearly, consistently, and effectively. If you know an area you are struggling in, do what you need to do to make sure you will ace the format with your eyes closed.

Following these simple but effective methods, and practicing them on a regular basis, will help you overcome your anxiety and conquer and exam, from high school to college.

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