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Dealing with Test Anxiety

With Finals Week coming up, we are giving some helpful articles on getting through the “dreaded” week.

A hundred cartloads of anxiety will not pay an ounce of debt. -Italian proverb

Before the test:

  • Be prepared!
  • Learn your material thoroughly.
  • Get a good night’s sleep the night before the exam.
  • Don’t go to the exam with an empty stomach.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables are often recommended to reduce stress. Stressful foods can include processed foods, artificial sweeteners, carbonated soft drinks, chocolate, eggs, fried foods, junk foods, pork, red meat, sugar, white flour products, chips and similar snack foods, foods containing preservatives or heavy spices.
  • Take a small snack, or some other nourishment to help take your mind off of your anxiety. Avoid high sugar content (candy), which may aggravate your condition.
  • Allow yourself plenty of time, especially to do things you need to do before the test and still get there a little early.
  • Relax just before the exam.
  • Don’t try to do a last minute review.

During the test:

  • Read the directions carefully.
  • Budget your test taking time.
  • Change positions to help you relax.
  • If you go blank, skip the question and go on.
  • If you’re taking an essay test and you go blank on the whole test, pick a question and start writing. It may trigger the answer in your mind.
  • Don’t panic when students start handing in their papers. There’s no reward for being the first done.