Test Taking Skills Managing Test Anxiety The major problem with test anxiety is its effect on thinking ability. To manage this anxiety, be well prepared for the test. Be well rested and nourished the day of the test. Think positively: “ I can do OK on this exam, because I’ve studied.” Get to the test early. Read the instructions CAREFULLY. If you feel anxious, calm yourself, stretch your arms & legs and relax them a few times. FOCUS on doing your BEST. Treat yourself when the exam is over. Preparing for Exams DO NOT cram, you do not have enough short term memory to remember the information you will need for the test. Start studying well in advance. A week before the exam do an initial overview. Then develop a plan for studying this material over the next week. Study from the top down. It is easier to retain material that is well organized. Do not take in new material the night before the exam. You don’t want to stress yourself discovering important information you don’t know. It will also help you to avoid the temptation to cram. Tips for increasing test strategies. Find out what material the test will cover and the format of the test. Use as many study strategies as you can. Note cards, outlines, diagrams, pictures & self-testing Understand the material before you memorize it. Essay Exams: Predict test “?’s” Develop outlines for your answers. Problem Solving Exams: Review all homework, practice extra examples from your text. Open Book Exams: Prepare as though it were a closed book exam. Place post it notes for tabs on your text so you can easily access material. Take Home Exams: Gather materials you will need then schedule enough time so you can complete the exam. Taking the Test Listen for any oral directions, read written directions carefully, underline key words. Survey the entire test to get a feel for its content. Note the point values on each section and schedule your time accordingly. Utilize information you acquired during the test, go back and answer questions you were unsure of first time around. When reviewing your answers, if you were pretty sure you were correct the first time, LEAVE THE ANSWER ALONE! Types of Tests Short answer: Answer in brief sentences or lists. Essay: Read the question carefully and construct an outline for your answer. Use examples to highlight your main points, Summarize and draw conclusions. Allow time to polish your answer. Multiple Choice: Consider ALL of the options, eliminate incorrect answers and pick the answer that is most nearly true. Matching- Answer the easy questions first to reduce the chance of guessing incorrectly on difficult items. True/False: Don’t spend too much time on these, and beware of words like all, most, some, few, never, always, usually and rarely.
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