Test Anxiety

Test anxietyAnyone can get test anxiety. In fact, it is normal to feel some stress before a test. The anticipation and nerves you feel can actually help you perform at your peak. However, for some people this normal stress is much more intense. Students who worry a lot in general may feel more anxious at test time. Those who worry about getting every answer correct may be even more prone to test stress.

Students who eat right, get plenty of rest, and get ample play and exercise time are better equipped to combat test anxiety. These are important factors all the time, but it’s most important to get all three the day before a test.

Practicing these few tips prove to be valuable skills not only when dealing with test anxiety, but in many of life’s situations:

Always Be Prepared

Study and do homework in a quiet area to allow for concentration.  Review information in small doses prior to a test so you will retain information and feel confident with the material on test day.  Ensure that you arrive on time, or even a little early, so you avoid feeling late and flustered when you sit down to begin the exam.

Be Positive

Everyone makes mistakes.  Let the past remain there.  Accept your mistakes and be prepared to do your best on test day.  Use self-talks during the test to remind yourself, “I’ve studied and I’m ready to do my best.”

Just Breathe

Breathing exercises can help you calm down.  Inhale slowly and deeply through the nose and exhale slowly through the mouth.  Repeat as needed throughout the test to relax yourself.


Exercise increases overall health and improves mood.  Regular exercise provides excellent stress-reducing benefits.

As with anything, practice makes perfect.  Test anxiety will not go away overnight, but facing and dealing with it consistently over time will help to manage it.

What test-taking, stress-reducing techniques do you use?

For more information and test-taking tips, join the FLVS Counselors in our upcoming webinar College Test Preparation: SAT, ACT, & PERT for some strategies that are sure to help you succeed on test day! Login on Wednesday, April 16, 2014, at 6:30 p.m. EST at www.tinyurl.com/FLVSCounselors.

Amy LaGrastaAmy LaGrasta, Flex School Counseling Senior Manager, helps students make informed decisions about courses, career and college options, and the study habits needed for online success. Prior to joining FLVS, she served as the guidance director at Estero High School in Lee County, FL where she was honored with the Teacher of Distinction award.

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