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Posted by Barb Gavitt, CDEI, ITP, SILA-F ● August 3, 2016

Avoid Test Anxiety with these Killer Test-Taking Tips

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Test anxiety can wreak havoc on those who are not good test takers. A little nervousness is normal, but real test anxiety can interfere with your success. The good news is that you can learn how to be a good test taker by following these few simple test-taking tips:

  1. Read each question – twice – and do not look at the answers until you understand what the question is asking
  2. Look for key words in the question, such as “MUST”, “ALL”, “NONE”, “NOT CORRECT” and “EXCEPT”
  3. Read all answers choices before selecting an answer… While C might be an OK answer, D might be the BEST or more complete answer. If you struggle with this, start reading the answer choices with letter D and work your way up to A.
  4. Do not spend too much time thinking about one question.
  5. If you have a question which you cannot answer, DO NOT dwell on it. Go with your first instinct, flag it for review, and be confident moving forward.
  6. When you finish the exam, only review the questions you have flagged for review
  7. Do not change an answer unless you are absolutely sure you are changing it to the right answer. You only get one shot at your first impression, which is almost always right, so go with your gut!

Make sure you have a plan for how to make a best guess when you don’t know the answer to a specific question.

If you have a question that includes a lot of additional facts….then you must determine which information is necessary to answer the question and ignore the rest.

If you are looking for the one answer that is correct or NOT correct…then look at each answer choice and determine if it is correct (true) or not correct (false). When you find three of the answers that are either true or false statements, the fourth answer will be the best choice.

If you are simply not sure of the correct answer…then start determining which answers are not correct. Process of elimination is your best tool and will help you narrow down the answer choices in case you have to guess.

Above all else, you must go into the exam feeling prepared and confident with a positive attitude!

“Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford


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