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Education: Test Anxiety

Depression. Irritability. Sadness. Stomach pain. Headache.

I am getting better at identifying my symptoms of test anxiety. Knowing why I’m feeling these symptoms helps a little.

The most difficult part of taking college classes -for me – is the tests. I fear failure. Because good enough isn’t. It’s a core value I was taught – “That’s pretty good. I think you can do better.” (This lesson is most likely based in good, encouraging intention; personal interpretation is subjective though) And, really, who wants to bring home less than an A?

I imagine some of the people who suffer from this get over test anxiety as they mature – after all, it’s only a test. And I have become a very good student. My gpa is a consistent 4.0. I pass all my quizzes and exams with high marks. I study and I do well.

Still, those symptoms returned over the weekend – I have two quizzes scheduled this week. American Government and Liberal Math.

Recognizing that I still have fear of failure and knowing I do well on quizzes, doesn’t eliminate the somewhat Pavlovian response to these necessary academic measuring sticks.

And maybe my fear lies in knowing these are the last two classes I need to finish my AA degree in Liberal Arts. Not passing – which, based on my track record, is highly unlikely – means I’ll need to take these classes again in the Spring. Not a big deal (unless you think the symptoms indicate otherwise) but also not part of the plan. My plan. To put this type of education in the rear view for now.

Time may be the only answer – keep taking tests until this response is almost nil. If you’d like to respond, I’m open to anything you’ve actually tried that helped you.