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On Being Test-Wise

General test taking strategies

Angie Hairrell

on 9 August 2016

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Transcript of On Being Test-Wise

Do you have it?
How Test Wise Are YOU?
1. Know yourself.
2. Know the test.
3. Be prepared--Become test-wise.
4. Have a plan.
5. Execute the plan.
6. Sharpen the saw--Improve your test-taking skills.
Game Plan
Believe you are capable of obtaining a high score
Take responsibility for the outcome of the exam
Develop and maintain a positive attitude
Know the expectation.
Study for RECALL, not recognition, by using elaboration and associations.
Use your strengths.
There is no substitution for study.
Plan for repetition.
Preparing to Perform
Manage your time
Triage questions
Plan for time to check your work
Read the Lead-In (interrogatory) first
Avoid reading errors--know what the question is asking, don't overlook details
Avoid faulty reasoning
false causality,
Avoid jumping to conclusions
Eliminate wrong answers
Test-taking Skills
1. Pick the general alternative.
2. Avoid absolutes.
3. Middle of the range--for numerical options
4. Association--repeat of a word or phrase
5. Similar and opposite alternatives--correct response is often one of two opposite alternatives
6. Longest alternative
7. Grammar Disagreement
8. C reflex
9. Guess as a LAST resort.
Sharpen the Saw
Why do people fail?
Why people fail
Lack of Preparation
Lack of Execution
Inadequate reading skills
Poor reasoning skills
Cognitive errors and biases
Lack of content knowledge
Time Management
Inadequate time to prepare
Inadequate study/learning strategies
Inadequate type or amount of practice
Misunderstanding the exam format
Poor time management
Text Anxiety
Poor test taking skills
Study: 55% of answers changed were from wrong to right (Kruger, Wirtz, & Miller, 2005)
Know yourself as a test-taker!
It is not a matter of IF, but WHEN.
You initially guessed
You are overthinking the question
It is the final seconds of the exam.
Text Anxiety
Proper Preparation
Testing as an adverse stimulus
Deep Breathing
Relaxation Phrase
Progressive Muscle Relaxation
Analyzing the question without emotion
Cognitive Interference
Games during preparation
Cognitive Restructuring
Distorted Thinking
Positive self-talk
I study with music on in the background.
I often text or answer emails during my study sessions.
I highlight important material so I can find it later.
I draw my own pictures and create tables when I study.
I write questions that could be asked on the test.
A review book is my primary study resource.
Tense and relax each muscle group as follows:
Forehead - Wrinkle your forehead, try to make your eyebrows touch your hairline for five seconds. Relax. Eyes and nose - Close your eyes as tightly as you can for five seconds. Relax. Lips, cheeks and jaw - Draw the centers of your mouth back and grimace for five seconds. Relax. Feel the warmth and calmness in your face.
Hands - Extend your arms in front of you. Clench your fists tightly for five seconds. Relax. Feel the warmth and calmness in your hands.
Forearms - Extend your arms out against an invisible wall and push forward with your hands for five seconds. Relax.
Upper arms - Bend your elbows. Tense your biceps for five seconds. Relax. Feel the tension leave your arms.
Shoulders - Shrug your shoulders up to your ears for five seconds. Relax.
Back - Arch your back off the floor for five seconds. Relax. Feel the anxiety and tension disappearing.
Stomach - Tighten your stomach muscles for five seconds. Relax.
Hips and buttocks - Tighten your hip and buttock muscles for five seconds. Relax.
Thighs - Tighten your thigh muscles by pressing your legs together as tightly as you can for five seconds. Relax.
Feet - Bend your ankles toward your body as far as you can for five seconds. Relax.
Toes - Curl your toes as tightly as you can for five seconds. Relax.
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