With the summer weather comes to the GTA, everyone’s desire is to constantly be outdoors. No one likes the idea of being confined to a classroom when it’s 30 degrees outside, but sadly it’s the price to pay for being a student. The approaching summer months also bring upon a renewed stress felt every year: exam time. When the time to prep for final exams comes, there are many other things you would rather be doing, but ultimately you need to crack down and properly prepare.
Test Anxiety in Canada
According to a study last year at Western University, 38.5% of students self-reported some degree of test anxiety. A 2013 study by the Canadian Association of College and University Student Services revealed that 89% of students were overwhelmed by their academic workload. Similar figures apply at the middle school and high school level.
Overcoming Test Anxiety with Proper Study Habits
If you feel anxious about your upcoming exams, the best policy would be to study. Seems pretty simple right? But try to mix up your study time a bit from the normal pace. It’s important to keep yourself alert while studying so as to retain your concentration.
If you feel yourself fading while hitting the books, take a ten minute break and practice your karate technique to bring your body back to a state of full awareness. Treat your “exercise break” as a reward for achieving a study goal. By remaining active you will increase the effectiveness of your study session, just remember the main objective is to be studying not to be working out so don’t get too wrapped up in the wrong task.
The Downsides of Cramming
Perhaps you are the type to cram for exams and not prepare in advance. If this is the method usually taken, then test anxiety is sure to be a part of your routine. It’s never a good idea to cram an entire semester of studies into the night before a test. Not only is your brain not programmed to handle information overload, you will likely show up to your test exhausted and perform poorly as a result.
Try to create a study schedule a few weeks prior to your exam date that covers all material you need to know. Spread out the material in a way that makes it easy for you to study a little at a time. The day before the exam should be treated as a review date -not as a cram date – just to show yourself that you know this stuff inside and out!
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Your teachers want you to succeed during exam time. Their job is to teach, so make them teach! If you feel you are not prepared for an upcoming exam in any way try reaching out to your teacher and asking them for extra help. Ask questions and have intelligent conversation with them on the topic. Speaking with someone who fully understands the subject matter is the best way to ensure you understand.
The biggest thing to remember for exam time is to be as prepared as possible. Study outside if you feel the call of the outdoors, bring exercise into your study routine, have a study schedule and bring your teachers into the conversation. As long as you plan ahead and stay focused your exams should come and go with ease, and then it’s onto summer!