Imagine the scene of the exam hall, the noise of the invigilator walking down and up and the deafening sound of the clock ticking. For several students, the stress and pressure of examinations can be suffocating.
The students who are most likely to do well under pressure have a very specific outlook and will have repeatedly practiced nurturing this so it comes as second nature. But now that examinations are here, the time for that has passed. Therefore what is the best advice for those who are prone to panicking?
Here we discuss about some important scientific ways to beat the onset of terror in an examination-
Take a deep breath
When under stress and pressure, your mind becomes awash with hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. In various cases, this makes students speed up, as they think they have less time left than they really do.
When under stress or pressure, hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline flood the mind, which makes students think they have less time than they do.
Researchers have also discovered a vicious cycle between heart rate and emotions. The more stressed you’re, the faster your heart beats. But a faster heart-rate is often interpreted as stress, which means a difficult situation can quickly escalate. If you break for a moment and take a deep breath, these helps everything slow down and break the cycle.
Read the question twice – without holding your pen and stick
One of the most common mistakes made in exams is misreading the problem or question. Re-reading a problem or question sounds so simple, but it is amazing how simply this can lapse. For students who have low impulse control, try recommending they put down their pencil or pen when they read the question. This will assist counteract the urge to rush and write down a solution immediately.
Read the problem or question twice without holding your stick and pen to the plan – these psychology-inspired way or tip will help students keep their cool.
Think back to your revision: have you answered similar problems before?
Even if a student has not faced the accurate same question before, remembering a successful thought process can assist them get started. This is because it helps students be aware of their thought processes and choose an effective way of thinking about a question, rather than panicking. This idea or concept of thinking about your thinking, known as metacognition, has been found to be one of the most successful strategies for enhancing self-regulation and self-awareness.
What would your tutor say?
Psychologists often talk about the Dunning-Kruger effect, which clarify why novices often tend to overestimate their abilities and are less aware of their limitations. Teachers can avoid this among students by asking them to place themselves in the shoes of someone wiser or older. Chances is that over the previous months tutors will have repeatedly given suggestions and advice on how best to go about answering a problem. Asking “What would my tutor say?” should assist students get on track.
Better to guess the answer than leave it blank
Write nothing at all and you are guaranteed to get zero. Sport fans know this as “a shot to nothing”, as you have nothing to lose if it goes wrong. The only caveat here is at college, where some examinations are negatively marked.
Stick to your exam strategy
It is simple, when faced with a difficult problems and questions, to feel put off and demoralized. But having an exam strategy can assist students stay focused and alert.
Our brains crave control and certainty. When we feel unsure of what to do, or that we have no influence on the outcome, we tend to feel more anxious and stressed. By focusing on pre-prepared game plans, students can wrestle back this feeling of control and certainty.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself
Some stress can assist aid performance, but excessive pressure often stops students from thinking visibly or clearly. One sign that psychologists say is an indication that a student is under too much stress or pressure is thinking in extremes. This might include phrases such as “I must write at least five pages to answer this problem” and “I have to get full marks”.
This all-or-nothing thinking is not helpful. Students should be confident to practice self-compassion and be kind to themselves in the examination. This can be done by using phrases and words such as “sometimes”, “I could” or “I might”. For instance, “I might write five pages in answer to this problem, but if I’m running out of time period and struggling, it’s better to move on.”