Tag Archives: test anxiety

Everybody knows how nerve-wracking high stakes tests can be. Less widely known are all the effective ways to combat and ultimately overcome test anxiety. Spend an hour to learn insights that can relieve a lifetime of stress. What causes test anxiety? Why is a certain amount of anxiety helpful in critical situations? What strategies help manage response to stress in the moment? What strategies help manage response to stress in advance?    Our Overcoming Test Anxiety seminar explains test anxiety comes from, why it’s not always a bad thing, and what you can do about it. Learn the fundamentals of stress and success from a veteran educator with a background in counseling and performance management.   This seminar is part of our July Seminar Series. The fee is $25 for this program or $99 for as many of the July seminars as you like.   Advance registration is required. Register through our Student Information Form…

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Everybody knows how nerve-wracking high stakes tests can be. Less widely known are all the effective ways to combat and ultimately overcome test anxiety. Spend an hour to learn insights that can relieve a lifetime of stress. What causes test anxiety? Why is a certain amount of anxiety helpful in critical situations? What strategies help manage response to stress in the moment? What strategies help manage response to stress in advance?    Our Overcoming Test Anxiety seminar explains test anxiety comes from, why it’s not always a bad thing, and what you can do about it. Learn the fundamentals of stress and success from a veteran educator with a background in counseling and performance management.   This seminar is part of our June Seminar Series. The fee is $25 for this program or $99 for as many of the June seminars as you like.   Advance registration is required. Register through our Student Information Form…

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I recently shared a fascinating conversation with Ned Johnson, co-author of The Self-Driven Child: The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Control Over Their Lives. We were recording the Tests and the Rest episode on Creating a Homeschool Plan During a Crisis (highly recommended) when he started talking about nuts. Actually, he was talking about response to stress, which then led to a discourse on nuts–and not even in the context of allergies. This isn’t as weird as it sounds, though, assuming you are familiar with the groundbreaking work of Sonia Lupien. Dr. Sonia Lupien, the current Canada Research Chair on Human Stress, is the founder and director of the Centre for Studies on Human Stress. Her research into the effects of stress on the human brain have uncovered some interesting insights, including that of the relativity of stress. In a nutshell–pardon the pun–what I find exciting (world…

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Test anxiety is truly an unruly beast, eager to sabotage us during our most important moments. Fortunately, all kinds of strategies work well at taming this beast. If you’ve ever struggled with maintaining peak performance in the face of stress, consider adding expressive writing to your arsenal. Expressive writing?! Gerardo Ramirez and Sian L. Beilock, researchers from the University of Chicago, unraveled an interesting knot of interactions: – Worries lead to poor test performance. – Expressive writing helps regulate worries. – Expressive writing should lead to better test performance. These researchers devised a series of tests to test their hypothesis that expressive writing benefits high-stakes test performance, especially for students who tend to worry in testing situations, by reducing rumination. They created a high-stakes math testing environment in their lab and amped up the pressure among subjects. Then, subjects spent 10 min either sitting quietly (control group) or writing as…

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Sitting for standardized tests often feels as charged and fraught with meaning as any big game or performance. Test takers are literally competing for scores which may have major implications for future educational opportunities. Yes, the test anxiety struggle is real. Expert coaching and perfect practice testing make a massive difference in the levels of anxiety test takers feel and, more importantly, how they respond to that stress in the moment. Unfortunately, small problems at the start of a test or test section have the potential to sabotage the whole exam: Getting lost or running late on the way to a test Forgetting an admissions ticket or acceptable ID or experiencing some other stressor at check-in Starting slow because you are tired, underfed, over-caffeinated, or insufficiently warmed up Coming out of a break distracted by good or bad news Countless tactical or strategic errors can lead to a weak start…

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Test anxiety can hurt test takers, sometimes literally. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America describes debilitating physical symptoms of test anxiety, ranging from headaches and excessive sweating, to shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, and light-headedness leading to full-blown panic attack. Nausea and gastrointestinal distress can also occur, which probably only exacerbates the emotional and cognitive toll. Clearly, test anxiety takes a toll on test performance… or does it? Psychologist Sigmund Tobias explored this very idea in a 1990 research paper titled Test Anxiety: Cognitive Interference or Inadequate Preparation? In that paper, he sought to review the differences between two interpretations accounting for the poor test performance of highly anxious students. The interference hypothesis asserts that test anxiety interferes with recall of prior learning in testing situations. The deficit hypothesis theorizes that lower test scores obtained by test anxious students are attributable to inadequate study habits or deficient test taking…

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