Tips for Online Testing

Many of these suggestions will reduce test anxiety. If you are having active testing anxiety, try the breathing exercise listed below.

  1. Make sure you hit the "SAVE" button after answering each question (selecting an answer). This is very important because if you answer several questions and your computer freezes, you may lose all the short answers you just typed, etc. Hitting save frequently will save frustration and time.
  2. Some students find it very helpful to read questions out loud to ensure understanding. This will minimize misunderstanding about what the question is asking. If you have the accommodation for a screen reader (or questions read aloud), be sure to ask your instructor for this.If you email the instructor, copy on the request or reminder.
  3. If you have an accommodation for extra time, be sure to contact your instructor ahead of time to ensure that the testing time is set accurately for you (plus 50 or 100% extra time). If you email the instructor, copy on the request or reminder.
  4. If you have an accommodation for clarification, be sure to ask your instructor how to contact him or her if you have a question about an item on the test.If you email the instructor, copy on the request or reminder.
  5. Plan ahead and find a quiet place with no distractions to test, so you can fully concentrate on the questions and not be interrupted.
  6. Hydration is important for your body and brain to work well. Have a water bottle close by if you need it.
  7. Get a good night's sleep before testing. By the way, testing late at night is not an optimal time unless you have time to rest beforehand.
  8. Make sure you are eating properly. Your brain will not function adequately if your blood sugar is low (from not eating).
  9. Breathing exercises will bring down your blood pressure and help you calm yourself. Try this:
    • Breathe in for a count of 4.
    • Hold the breath for a count of 4.
    • Breathe out (release) for a count of 4.
    • Repeat this several times. You should feel your body responding positively.
  10. Along with breathing, you can try progressive muscle relaxationwhile you are taking the test. Tighten and release one muscle at a time, or use a squeeze ball.
  11. If possible, take small breaksto stand and stretch and move around. This helps the blood to flow (especially if you are zoning out a bit).

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