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Seminars, programs offer preparation tips to combat test anxiety

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Posted: Wednesday, October 10, 2012 6:30 am

Business junior Jacob Patterson said he feels nervous right before an exam.

“I don’t know what to expect from this college or from the professors, so I don’t know how I need to prepare,” the first semester transfer student said.

If preparation is a challenge, the University College is hosting a “Studying for your Exam Type” at noon today to discuss test-taking strategies, ways to prepare for an exam and tips on note-taking. 

“We’ve been offering different seminars and programs throughout the semester,” said Rebecca Bailey, University Tutorial and Supplemental Instruction assistant director. “It all builds from SuccessU as a way to provide tools for success.”

Incoming freshmen can take a two-day SuccessU program before the semester begins. SuccessU aims to help students prepare for college-level courses.

During the weeks of midterms and finals it seems as though stress levels rise as students pull all-nighters and last-minute cram sessions, but it all comes down to one basic rule: Be prepared.

“We find that students suffer from testing anxiety based on their level of preparedness,” Bailey said.

Criminal justice sophomore Cari Stokes sometimes suffers from testing anxiety when she isn’t as prepared as she wants to be.

“I get nervous for tests when I procrastinate and don’t study,” Stokes said. “I second-guess myself and will change answers that were right.”

For some people though, testing anxiety is nonexistent. Business marketing junior Vencie Dorsainvil does not seem to suffer from anxiety or nerves.

“I plan ahead and prepare for tests,” Dorsainvil said. “Or I just wing it because I’m not prepared and that’s on me.”

Studying and preparing for tests and exams is a way to combat anxieties.

“I study for about four hours for one test,” Patterson said, “I go over all my notes and homework.”

Dorsainvil said she makes errors when she is in a hurry to complete the test.

“The biggest mistake I make is forgetting to bubble in an answer on my Scantron, or I mis-bubble,” Dorsainvil said.

Patterson said he needs to take his time and not rush during a test.

“Sometimes I’ll copy down the numbers wrong or put decimals in the wrong spot,” Patterson said about his math class.

To combat testing anxiety, students should take advantage of the services offered to them.

“Counseling services, tutorial sessions, supplemental instruction and other programs were implemented to help students be successful,” Bailey said.

Students can schedule individual tutoring sessions with upperclassmen or graduate students for different courses at $6.50 an hour. Supplemental instruction are weekly student-run classes for specific courses, where students can group study.

For more information go to uta.edu/successseries.

@DarcyBirden

darcy.birden@mavs.uta.edu

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