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Test Anxiety Northwest High School March 14, 2007 Parent Involvement Activity.

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Presentation on theme: "Test Anxiety Northwest High School March 14, 2007 Parent Involvement Activity."— Presentation transcript:

1 Test Anxiety Northwest High School March 14, 2007 Parent Involvement Activity

2 Take out your #2 pencil…

3 Question #1 What is the length, in feet, of the hypotenuse of a right triangle with legs that are 6 feet long and seven feet long, respectively? A)square root of 13 B) square root of 85 C) 13 D)21 E)42

4 One hundred cartloads of anxiety will not pay an ounce of debt. Italian Proverb

5 What is anxiety? Anxiety is a basic human emotion consisting of fear and uncertainty that typically appears when an individual perceives an event as being a threat to the ego or self-esteem.

6 One of the most threatening events that causes anxiety in students today is testing. When students develop an extreme fear of performing poorly on an examination, they experience test anxiety.

7 Do I have test anxiety? You probably have test anxiety if you answer yes to four or more of the following : 1.I have a hard time getting started studying for a test. 2.When studying, I find many things that distract me. 3.I expect to do poorly on a test no matter how much or how hard I study. 4.When taking a test, I experience physical discomfort, such as sweaty palms, an upset stomach, a headache, difficulty breathing, and muscle tension.

8 5.When taking a test, I find it difficult to understand the directions and questions. 6.When taking a test, I have difficulty organizing my thoughts. 7.When taking a test, I often draw a blank. 8.When taking a test, I find my mind wandering to other things. 9.I usually score lower on tests than assignments and papers. 10.After a test, I remember information I couldnt recall during the test.

9 Test Anxiety Test anxiety is a major factor contributing to a variety of negative outcomes, including: –Psychological distress –Academic underachievement –Academic failure –Insecurity

10 Test anxiety is composed of 3 major components: –Cognitive –Affective –Behavioral

11 Cognitive Students who experience test anxiety from the cognitive perspective are worriers who lack self-confidence. They may be preoccupied with negative thoughts, doubting their academic ability and intellectual competence. They are more likely to overemphasize the potential negative results and feel helpless when in testing situations. Some may feel the need to answer every question on the test correctly. When they do not, they feel incompetent.

12 Affective From the affective perspective, test anxiety causes some students to experience physiological reactions, such as increased heart rate, nausea, frequent urination, increased perspiration, cold hands, dry mouth, and muscle spasms. These reactions may be present before, during, and even after the test is completed.

13 Behavioral Test-anxious students express anxiety behaviorally by procrastinating and having inefficient study and test- taking skills.

14 Overcoming Test Anxiety While test anxiety may not disappear completely, there are strategies to ease the anxiety.

15 Parent Dos and Donts Dont be too anxious about your childs test scores. Do encourage your child to do his or her best. Dont pressure your child; you may stress him out! Keep a positive attitude about tests. Mark test days on your calendar so you are aware of testing.

16 Parent Dos and Donts Make sure your child gets enough sleep before the test. Ensure that your child eats a healthy breakfast, but avoid heavy foods that may make him groggy. Also avoid sugary foods that may make him hyper. Make sure that she gets up early enough to be on time for school.

17 Parent Dos and Donts Let your child relax for a few hours before bedtime. It is stressful for a child to study all night. Be proactive…contact school officials if you have questions about your childs test scores.

18 Student Dos and Donts Before the Test Avoid thinking you need to cram the night before the test. Approach the exam with confidence. Use whatever strategies you can to personalize success: Visualization Logic Talking to yourself, etc. View the exam as an opportunity to show how much youve learned. After all, you are prepared.

19 Student Dos and Donts Before the Test Strive for a relaxed state of concentration. Avoid speaking with any fellow students who express negativity or will distract you. Get a good nights sleep the night before the exam. Eat a healthy breakfast: –Fresh fruits and vegetables reduce stress –Avoid foods with high sugar content. Arrive at school early. Promise yourself a post-exam reward.

20 Student Dos and Donts During the Test Read the directions carefully Budget your time Change positions to help you relax If you go blank, skip the question and come back to it later. For multiple choice questions, read all the options first. Then eliminate the most obvious. If youre still unsure, go with your first impression. Dont panic if other students finish before you; theres no reward for being the first done.

21 If you find yourself getting anxious… –Tell yourself: I can be anxious later. Now is the time to take the exam. –Relax. You are in control. –Take slow, deep breaths. –Dont think about the fear. –Pause. Think about the next step and keep going, step-by-step. –Mentally praise yourself. –Expect some anxiety. –Think for a moment about the post-exam reward you promised yourself.

22 After the Test Whether you feel you did well or not, be sure to follow through on the reward you promised yourself – and enjoy it!

23 In Conclusion Test anxiety is something that impacts students from all ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds, and all grade levels. It is absolutely normal to feel test anxiety.

24 References United States Department of Education ety ERIC Counseling and Student Services Clearinghouse

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