Students get more from the exam than just grades. Yes, exams cause a tremendous amount of stress, but they do a great job of analyzing a student’s academic knowledge. Tests help develop and sharpen several skills that prepare you for a future career, such as initiative, ability to work independently, persistence, problem-solving, understanding, self-awareness, and memory skills.
We all make mistakes. However, making them in examinations is the worst place as it can cost you good grades and reduce your overall academic performance and the chance to graduate on time. So if you want your education journey to be smooth, here are common and costly exam mistakes and tricks to avoid them.
Inadequate Knowledge on the Subject
Without sufficient knowledge of the subject, you may provide wrong answers and eventually get a bad grade. For example, if you didn’t understand a specific math or science topic during the exam, you might use the wrong formula or equation.
Teachers want straight and clear answers and won’t tolerate beating about the bush. So ensure weeks before the exam, you test your knowledge in every subject. Use practice tests and questions to identify knowledge gaps. Then use a study guide to organize notes, learn multiple topics, and foster comprehension. In some schools, students are given study guides for exams.
In such a case, use it to prepare for exams and improve your scores. The alternative is to create your own study guide. Templates available online simplify the process and reduce the time needed to make one from scratch.
It’s important to get the most out of your study guide as it will have a huge impact on how well you prepare for your exams and absorb the necessary knowledge needed to get a good grade. To better understand a subject, you can go further and read papers written by a professional from an essay writing service.
Poor Test Taking Techniques
You might be an excellent student who attends classes and submits their assignments on time but struggles with exams. The problem could be your test-taking skills.
Poor test-taking strategies make it difficult to recall information, increasing the odds of getting a low exam score. Besides, once students know they are poor test-takers, they are likely to have anxiety during exams resulting in a negative attitude and bad outcome. The solution to this problem lies in changing the test-taking and techniques. But, the strategy to apply depends on the type of exam.
So first, identify the type of test you will be taking. Is it multiple choice or an essay? For multiple-choice review all the options in detail and select the correct answer. For an exam that requires writing an essay, start with an outline and grab attention from the first sentence.
Misreading the Instructions
Students who rush to finish the exam often start answering the question before fully understanding the instructions. If you read the specifications fast, you might misunderstand directions. To avoid this common exam mistake, read the instructions slowly and carefully before answering any question. Underline key words and note down how many compulsory questions you need to answer and the word count expected.
Remember, exams will subject any student to an uncomfortable pressure, but avoiding common mistakes will make a big difference to your overall performance.
Running Out of Time
You might know all the answers to the questions asked in exam papers but run out of time. When you fail to answer some questions, the teacher assumes you don’t know the answer. Timed exams test both speed and understanding.
So if you always run out of time in exams and make silly mistakes on the topic you are sure you know, then start studying in timed conditions. For this strategy to work, you have to give yourself less time in practice so that during the exam, you can use the additional time to plan your responses and correct mistakes you might have made. If you are sure you will run out of time, prioritize your answers based on questions that carry the highest marks.
Misunderstand the Question
Panic and stress can cause a student to misunderstand an exam question. Reading the question in haste can make it harder to comprehend what is required of you and which concepts to use. To avoid this error looks for clues in the questions and underline important elements. Rereading the question several times won’t hurt as it ensures that you interpret it correctly.
You are working hard to succeed in your academics. So don’t let these avoidable exam mistakes get in the way of a good grade.