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How To Conquer Test Anxiety

Posted by: Dr. Granat on January 6, 2009

Do you, your child, or a loved one have test anxiety? Most people get as little nervous before a big test or exam but for some students both young and old test anxiety causes them many problems in their scholastic career. Students of all ages can suffer from test anxiety and there are some easy ways to tell if you or someone you know is affected.


People with test anxiety may experience a racing pulse and heartbeat before a test, have trouble sleeping the night before, have stomach upset before or during a test, have trouble concentrating because of fear of doing poorly, and perform poorly on tests even though they were able to ace practice tests or know the material well.

People with test anxiety can face some serious consequences if their anxiety is left untreated. Test anxiety can prevent students from doing well on college entrance exams such as the SAT, GMAT, LSAT, and MCAT. If an otherwise good student with great potential does poorly on a college exam because of test anxiety their entire college career can be negatively impacted causing them to be unable to get the education and job they wanted.

There are treatments for test anxiety that can help most students who get nervous about tests to perform better and reduce their anxiety. For students who need to take major exams, test anxiety programs can be used as a part of SAT preparation, LSAT preparation, GMAT preparation, or MCAT preparation.

The most common and effective type of test anxiety treatment program is one that teaches the sufferer how to manage their unpleasant feelings, conquer their fears, and builds their confidence. These strategies can be achieved through self hypnosis, positive affirmations, confidence building, and building the skills necessary to become a successful test taker.

Building the skills necessary to end test anxiety will also help a person become more confident in other areas of their life. There are many drawbacks to being overly anxious about tests, but there are many benefits to conquering test anxiety once and for all.

Jay P. Granat, Ph.D. is the Founder of He is a Psychotherapist with 24 years of experience

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