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Test Anxiety... - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Test Anxiety. …how to beat it!. Presented by NMU’s Academic and Career Advisement Center. What is TEST ANXIETY ?.

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Test Anxiety...

…how to beat it!

Presented by NMU’s Academic and Career Advisement Center


Typically, it is described as “worry” or “fear” caused by having to take a test. The anxiety adversely effects your ability to perform well on the test, even when you are well-prepared.

Common causes of Test Anxiety

  • Pressure to earn a certain grade.

  • Past failure on similar exams.

  • Unfamiliar type of test.

  • Misperception of preparedness.

  • Uncertainty about test format.

  • Uncertainty about test content.

  • Competition from classmates.

  • Poor Preparation.

  • Rumors of difficulty.

What are the signs?

  • Excessive worry or preoccupation about exam.

  • “Blanking” during the exam.

  • Difficulty maintaining concentration during the test .

  • Physical signs:

    • Nausea

    • Headache

    • Jitters

    • Trouble sleeping

    • Sweating

    • Racing pulse

Steps to Beat Test Anxiety

  • Plan ahead…use the syllabus.

  • Address difficulties early…talk with the professor.

  • Stay current with material/lectures.

  • Attend class…every time.

  • Establish realistic grade expectations.

  • Pre-test studying should be daily.

  • Study for a reason…with direction and purpose.

  • Study for understanding.

  • Set the right atmosphere for studying.

  • Study with a group or classmate.

  • Visit All Campus Tutoring.

  • Develop a daily review schedule.

  • Keep study time reasonable .


Test Day…it’s GO TIME!

  • Test day preparation is ESSENTIAL!

  • Get a good night’s sleep. Set your alarm clock.

  • Eat breakfast. Eat what you normally eat.

  • Ready yourself (extra pencils, turn off phone, etc.)

  • Choose your seat wisely…avoid friends.

  • Use the restroom before the test.

  • Briefly look over your notes…one last refresher.

  • Relax. Breathe. Get comfortable.

  • Stay POSITIVE. You’ve worked hard.

  • There are some test-taking strategies on the following pages…

Strategies for…

  • Multiple Choice Exams

    • Read the directions carefully.

    • Does the question provide clues to the answer?

    • Look for words like ALWAYS, NEVER, NOT.

    • Read each choice thoroughly. Details matter.

    • Immediately eliminate incorrect answer choices.

    • Solve questions in order given.

    • Pace yourself.

    • Mark and return to questions that are confusing or cause you to struggle.

    • Does your answer to one question conflict with the answer to another?

    • Don’t know the answer? Make an educated, reasoned guess.

More Strategies…

  • Short answer exams

    • Read the directions carefully.

    • Budget your time.

    • If you don’t understand the question..ASK!

    • Answer each question.

    • Don’t write more than needed.

    • Use complete sentences.

  • Essay Exams

    • Read the directions carefully.

    • Read all of the questions before beginning.

    • Outline before writing…make notes.

    • Answer all parts of the question.

    • Develop your thoughts…provide detail.

    • Stay focused, organized expression.

    • Watch your grammar and punctuation.

    • Write, Write, Write…..include everything you remember.


  • If time allows, go back and check your work.

  • Change answers? Only if you find glaring mistakes.

  • Do your best not to disturb others.

Good Luck!

This PowerPoint presentation is the property of Northern Michigan University’s Academic & Career Advisement Center. It may not be reproduced without written consent.


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