OPINION: Test Anxiety

Graphic by Jade Cash.

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Anxiety begins to build up in your body as you reach your class, and it only gets worse as the test begins. Your hands clam up. You begin to sweat. You forget everything you studied.

Test anxiety is a very real subject matter that needs far more recognition than it is currently getting. 

All too often, I have seen my fellow classmates struggle to keep afloat in class simply because of tests, and I too have had my fair share of challenges regarding test anxiety.

The countdown of the time you have left, the constant fear of failing weighing down on your shoulders, and the possibility of negatively affecting your grade are all reasons why test anxiety is such a widespread problem. 

According to Healthline, some symptoms of test anxiety include, but are not limited to, extreme sweating, stomach pains, nausea and feelings of lightheadedness. 

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Of course, we have all seen cases where a student fails a test simply because of lack of preparation, and they may experience similar side effects as a person who suffers from test anxiety. But what about those students who completed all the homework, studied and still failed? They should not be lumped into the same category as someone who put forth little to no effort. 

Healthline said: “Anxiety can also cause difficulty concentrating. You may feel like your thoughts are jumbled and you’ve forgotten everything that you’ve learned. You can also become more indecisive, and you may struggle to choose between two different answers.”

Speaking from experience, test anxiety and anxiety, in general, has a huge impact on an individual’s ability to reach their full potential. 

While a majority of students may face some form of stress before an exam, this is in no comparison to test anxiety itself.

“Many students experience some amount of stress and anxiety before and during exams,” said Oxfordlearning. “However, test anxiety is more severe, and can actually impair learning and hurt test performance.”

Test anxiety is something that can affect anyone at any given age. We need to start normalizing test anxiety, realize the negative results that it has on an individual instead of labeling it as an excuse, and start accommodating for those who suffer with it.

In order to get help with test anxiety, reach out to your teachers to let them know about the situation that you are facing and see if there are any changes that can be made. You may also want to try talking to a counselor and see if they have any helpful suggestions in regard to finding healthy coping skills that will aid in better test-taking.

If you are someone who suffers from anxiety or any form or any other mental illness, don’t be afraid to speak up and let your superiors know your current struggle. No one should ever have to face this hardship alone, and once you have found coping skills that work best for you, things will get better from there.

Contact the health and counseling center at  435-652-7755 or they are located at 1037 E. 100 S.