For Students > Support Programs > Disability Resource Center > For Students > Academics > Study tips for disabled students > About Test Anxiety

Test Anxiety:

Everyone experiences some level of nervousness or tension before taking a test, and a little nervousness, can actually help you perform better on the test. It gives you that extra adrenaline charge to improve your concentration and speed up your progress.

However, too much anxiety reduces your ability to recall information and slows down your test speed. If your anxiety is from lack of preparation, it is understandable. However, if you are adequately prepared, but still panic, you may need different study strategies! Speak to a Counselor, or enroll in the Test Taking Success course (CCS 123, CCS 123.1 & CCS 123.2) to reduse your anxiety, and improve your test-taking skills.

Symptoms of Test Anxiety:

    • Nervousness
    • Nonstop talking, boasting, inappropriate laughter
    • Withdrawal or extreme quietness  
    • Fear of forgetting, not finishing the test, not studying the right material
    • Lack of concentration
    • Change in appetite  
    • High degree of confusion  
    • Nausea
    • Sweaty palms  
    • Sleeplessness
    • Increased worry
    • Inadequate preparation

Strategies to reduce test anxiety:

RELAXATION TECHNIQUES can help reduce tension and negative thoughts by using muscle relaxation, positive visual imagery or cue words. 

POSITIVE SELF-TALK can interrupt thoughts of worry. Admit that you are anxious and accept it; then focus on telling yourself positive things such as: “I am prepared for this test”, “This test only measures my knowledge in a specific area, not my self worth”, “I am going to do the best I can”, etc.

POSITIVE VISUAL IMAGES. Visualize yourself studying in an organized manner. See yourself studying the essential information to take the exam, getting the grade you want, and taking the steps to ensure you are successful.

USE MENTAL SLOGANS that you repeat to yourself, and post around your study area. These can help when you feel overwhelmed. Repeat or look at the statements frequently.

USE TOOLS AND STRATEGIES that were successful in the past.

MEET WITH A COUNSELOR if you feel you need more guidance. Start early to begin studying for a test. Give yourself time to practice some of these techniques and decide which ones work best for you.  

Created: March 05, 2009 @ 02:50 PM
Last Modified: April 28, 2014 @ 12:12 PM


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