Stress. We all know it, right? As graduate students, it can feel like we are constantly trying to escape these feelings of stress and anxiety. However, it turns out that anxiety can, in fact, be adaptive in some cases! One of the most prominent examples of stress impacting our everyday lives, in my opinion, is test-taking. Although graduate school in psychology entails a significant amount of writing, the general impression is that tests and exams are more stressful for students. Exams are necessary for our education, unfortunately. All the way from a simple quiz in statistics, to comprehensive exams, and of course — the EPPP.
Since I’m sure you’re already a little worked up over a past test that was particularly stressful, or one that is coming up that is putting some extra pressure on you, I want to remind you that you’re ok. You’re going to be fine! That’s right—I’m going to go ahead and make that bold presumption. I know it’s stressful and hard to believe that you’re going to survive but take a little faith that you will.
Are you the person that is walks into the exam reading the study guide? Do you feel that if you don’t look over your note cards one last time that you will fail the test? Many people cram everything they can into the last moment before entering the exam room. If you think you are going to retain the last bit of information, you are mistaken.