Common Causes of Test Anxiety

Picture of Written by: Paige Neely

Written by: Paige Neely

Originally written by Cassandra Marie Vella on Paige’s Tutoring

Test Anxiety has been a leading factor for many students to fail exams and even an entire class. Often overlooked, test anxiety can be identified through a few telling signs.

Here are a few causes of test anxiety:

1. Expectations

Students may feel that they are going to disappoint those that they look up to most when they have big tests coming up; this is common with busy families. Letting go of that mindset will allow a student to breathe and take their best shot at the test with a clear conscious.

2. Believing Grades Determine Your Personal Success

The outcome of a grade for a test can really make a student beat themselves up for not getting a desired grade. These feelings automatically become, “I’m stupid” and “I won’t be a ____when I grow up.” When in reality, bad test scores can be corrected in some form of extra credit or a retake.

3. Allowing Inadequate Test Prep Anxiety Take Over

When it comes to test-taking, getting that A+ really becomes a daunting challenge when a student reviews the test material. Stress causing physical maladies such as challenging sleep appetite can actually impede someone’s ability to study or retain information. So that sleep or dinner lost to test anxiety, is really a rabbit hole no one wants to get stuck in.

5. Not Believing You Have Control Over Your Performance

A feeling of helplessness can really affect a student’s focus when it comes to a big test approaching. Not being able to predict the material and outcome of a test can really blur the connection between study and grades for some anxious students, causing a feeling of guilt. Whether the outcome of the exam holds that much power or not, many students face this guilt for not meeting goals they haven’t faced yet.

While some tips to treat test anxiety can be found in another post on our website, identifying the causes of some test anxiety feelings can really help put some students at ease. Test prep tutors can help students learn how to better prepare for most tests in life; consider booking one today and contact [email protected] for any questions on test prep tutoring.

Remember, almost everyone faces a bout of test anxiety at some point in their life, and may not even remember it. For those who live with test anxiety that impacts their daily life, talking to a professional is extremely recommended.

If you, or someone you know, resonates with any of these roots for test anxiety, focus on these roots to find a way to treat your symptoms with a professional.

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