Test anxiety is something that unfortunately affects many students. The fear of not knowing the right information and the fear of failing can be paralyzing. In turn, this can cause students to score lower on an exam even though they may know the course material.
To help lower test anxiety in your classroom, try having students follow these steps:
- Get a good night’s sleep
- Don’t take the test on an empty stomach; fruits and vegetables are a great choice
- Avoid caffeine (it makes you jittery)
- Engage in deep breathing for 2-5 minutes
- Write down formulas and dates in the test margin first so you don’t forget them
- If you’re stuck on a question, skip it and then go back to it later
- Chew gum (if allowed)
- Don’t panic when other students begin turning in tests, it’s not a race
Another important course of action is to offer practice tests for students. By taking practice exams that mimic the final exam, students can gradually become accustomed to the testing format and begin to feel more comfortable in a testing environment.
What else works for your students? Share with us in the comments section below!