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Tips for dealing with Test Anxiety

By Sierra Hobson

Scantrons and finals, pop quizzes, oh my! For many students just the sound of those words cause heartbeats to race. As if students don’t struggle enough with homework and class work, they are then put through immense amounts of stress and anxiety to prove that knowledge on a test. Not only are these tests usually more difficult than the class work, they tend to scare a lot of students. Why? Because of test anxiety. If you are a fellow student who grows anxious to take exams and never seems to be satisfied with your scores, read on for a few tips.


Tip # 1: Study

This is a pretty obvious tip, right? Well, a lot of anxious test takers build tasks up in their heads so much that they never get around to actually looking over the material. If you force yourself to study every night a week prior to the exam yes, you might be nervous, but you should be so comfortable with the information that you are more relaxed than normal.


Tip # 2: Ask Questions

Now, I know what you’re thinking, you can’t ask for help during the test. However, you can ask questions before the testing day. Is it multiple choice? How many questions are on it? Can I remediate? If you know what you’re getting into and the style of the test, you are already more prepared than you thought you would be.


Tip #3: Talk To Your Teacher

This tip isn’t guaranteed extra time to take the test or special treatment whatsoever, but it does guarantee that you’re not alone. It sounds silly, but just mentioning to your teacher that, “hey, I’m a little nervous for this test” may encourage that teacher to review the material one more time. Chances are, you’re not the only person in the class that needs the extra review or reassurance. Therefore, you’re not only helping yourself, but potentially the entire class.


Tip #4: Take Care of Yourself

According to the National Sleep Foundation, getting between 8.5-9.5  hours of sleep each night and eating a nutritious breakfast before beginning your day will help with concentration and performance. If you treat yourself right, your body will thank you for it and reward you with a more focused attitude throughout the school day.


Tip #5: Relax

Everyone gets nervous, and everyone has that class or test that they wish they could’ve performed better on. In reality, trying to over-study, or getting frustrated over a couple of points won’t do you any good. Take a deep breathe, pay attention in class, and relax. School is important, but no test is worth your personal happiness or sanity.


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