Students in college are often stressed out for a number of reasons. A study by the American Psychological Association found that 61% of students who sought out help from a counselor had anxiety. Stress and anxiety can come from a variety of sources in college, but tests and exams are a big contributor.
When students are anxious about a test, they may have test anxiety. The Princeton Review says that test anxiety can negatively affect a student’s performance, even if they have spent hours studying. Test anxiety can cause students to fail tests when they know all of the information minutes before an exam.
Because of test anxiety and exam stress in general, it’s important to know how to keep stress at bay. If you are less stressed out, you will likely perform better on your exam. There are many different ways to reduce exam stress and raise your exam scores.
10 Ways to Help Eliminate Exam Stress in College
Here are some of the best ways to eliminate exam stress in college.
- Prepare ahead of time. The sooner you begin preparing for an exam the more confident you will feel. Be sure to set aside a dedicated amount of time each day to study for an exam. If you wait until the last minute, you won’t be prepared and will likely panic because of that. If you have known the content for weeks, you will be more likely to feel confident when it’s time to take the exam.
- Come up with a study routine. A study routine is essentially a map of how and when you will be studying. If you need to study several chapters, break the chapters into smaller sections and re-read a section each day. Make it very clear what needs to be studied each day so you can stick to it. Then, you won’t be cramming right before your exam.
- Find additional study resources. Your instructor may offer practice exams online. You might be able to find more information about the concept in your textbook. You could meet with your instructor to go over some of the challenging concepts. There are many different ways to further understand the material so be sure to seek out some of those resources.
- Study in a clean space. If your desk is covered in books and papers, you will get distracted more easily. Your mind will feel cluttered and overwhelmed. This can actually impact the way you study and the way you perform on your exam. Before you begin studying, clean up your workspace so that your desk and your mind can remain clutter-free.
- Stay positive. Your mindset can actually impact your performance. Maybe you’re thinking negatively and assuming that you will fail a test. This will lower your confidence and can affect your performance on the exam. If you go into the exam believing that you will do well and that you are going to do your best, you will succeed. Some students find success in coming up with a mantra and repeating it to themselves when they are worried. It can be as simple as “I work hard and I can do this.”
- Take a break. If you’re studying constantly, you will overload yourself with information. You may even feel burned out. It’s important to take a break every so often. Put your textbooks away and do something fun or relaxing. You could watch a movie, take a nap, or enjoy a nice shower. Just make sure you get back to studying eventually.
- Get enough rest. Some students think that staying up late studying or re-reading their textbooks is the way to get a good grade on an exam. In reality, you need to be well-rested in order to perform well. If you don’t get enough sleep, you won’t be able to focus and you might find yourself drifting off instead of taking the exam. You will actually perform better when you have enough sleep so make sure you get eight to ten hours of rest.
- Try meditation. Meditation is a good way to take a break while you’re studying. It allows you to release your stress in a healthy way. It also teaches you how to maintain your focus. This is a useful skill to have as you study for an exam and take an exam too.
- Remove distractions. While it’s okay to take a break sometimes, you shouldn’t just check your phone or play games whenever you want to while studying. Put your phone away or download an app to keep yourself off your phone while you study. This will help you to focus on studying and stop getting distracted. If your TV distracts you, study at the library.
- Eat dark chocolate. Dark chocolate is very beneficial for stressful situations. Dark chocolate that is over 70% dark cocoa fights the hormone cortisol, which is connected to exam stress. It helps you to relax and is known to be a natural stress fighter. This is a good way to spend a break as you study too.
If you’re stressing out about an exam, make sure you give these suggestions a try. Along with online term paper writing services, they will help you to eliminate some or all of your exam stress. Then, you can perform better. Exam stress can have a serious impact on your grades so it’s important to manage your stress. You will become a happier and more relaxed student, which will also raise your grades.