Your child needs to develop the much-needed test-taking confidence for the UPCAT. The number one killer in any college entrance exam is test anxiety.
If you are a parent who knows how persistent your child is when it comes to studying but also notices that your child sometimes gets a low score in a test, it may be time to learn how to help your child overcome test anxiety. This is especially true if you are certain that your child is preparing hard for the UPCAT. Here are some strategies that can be used to successfully help your child overcome test anxiety.
Strategy 1: Help your child prepare.
There are many different things that can lead to the onset of test anxiety. Lacking in the area of preparation is often a major culprit. When a student is preparing for the UPCAT, he/she should devote a certain amount of time each day to reviewing as discussed in the previous tip. Time management skills often play a large role when it comes to actually studying, and comprehending the material. If your child tends to procrastinate a little in this area, then attempts to absorb all the UPCAT materials in at once, it is quite likely that your child will encounter anxiety when the actual UPCAT is put on their desk.
Strategy 2: Assist your child to be organized.
The next common culprit for test anxiety is lack of organization. You should encourage your child to keep any and all notes and other UPCAT Review materials organized in a folder or binder. This way, while your child is preparing for the UPCAT, he can easily reference material that has been covered and may pop up during the UPCAT. You should also assist your child in creating his/her very own “study space” that is organized. This will allow your child a dedicated location for reviewing and learning new UPCAT Review materials.
Strategy 3: Uncover your child’s anxiety issues.
Many students are naturally prone to worrying and experiencing anxiety on various levels. They may experience these things due to lack of self-confidence, a low amount of motivation, pressure in school and/or at home, or they may simply be afraid of performing to the extent in which they fail. This is all very common among students – especially in high school. If you uncover any of these issues, it is important to fully support your child to help them overcome the issues at hand. By doing this, you are also helping them overcome their test anxiety.
Strategy 4: Determine if your child suffers from test anxiety.
Now, many parents often wonder if their child is truly experiencing test anxiety, or if they simply are not putting enough effort into their work. In order to determine if anxiety is the case, you should ask your child’s teachers and adviser to identify potential indications of anxiety when they are taking a test. Common symptoms include sweating, developing gastrointestinal complications, appearing scared or nervous, developing a headache, complaining of nausea, vomiting, crying for no apparent reason, and others. If your child’s teachers identify these symptoms, then you will know that anxiety is definitely an issue.
Strategy 5: Prod your child to ask questions.
If your child is having problems grasping certain UPCAT Review materials, let him/her know that you are available. It is also important to let your child know that some online community may be able to assist them. Many kids refrain from asking questions for fear that they may become made fun of, or they may not fit in among their peers. Let your child know that by not asking questions for clarification, they are showing their weaknesses, and by asking questions, they are showing their strength.
Strategy 6: Teach your child relaxation and breathing exercises.
You should instruct your child to practice relaxation and breathing exercises if they start to feel anxious during the UPCAT. These types of exercises will help the student relax and focus on the UPCAT questions without going blank.
Strategy 7: Encourage positive self-talk to your child.
Last, but not least by any means, encourage positive self-talk to your child. When your child starts to feel as if they “can’t pass the UPCAT”, tell your child to tell himself/herself that they “CAN!” Let your child know that while fear is an important part to keeping us safe, that they do not have to fear the UPCAT. They simply need to be more positive and truly believe that they are able to do what they need to do to overcome test anxiety.
You cannot take the UPCAT for your child. But, you can certainly be involved and supportive along the way. Following these seven strategies will not only help your teen gain confidence, it may maximize his/her UPCAT score.