Why You Might be Bad at Taking Tests and What to Do About It

Not everyone is great at taking tests. This could be due to a variety of circumstances, though you’ll likely need to change your behavior or environment to fix this. Check out some common ways people are bad at taking tests down below.

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You Don’t Study Effectively

Not every studying method works the same per person. When you study, you should try to use a variety of learning methods. You should stimulate each of your senses, so the things you are trying to learn are more ingrained in your mind. For example, when using flash cards, try to make hand gestures that can go with them. You can also read the flash cards out loud, so your brain can learn in a variety of ways.

You could also try studying with a friend. See what methods work best for them and try it out yourself. If you find that you do well on your next test, keep doing the newer methods. If you still aren’t succeeding, keep trying and find a new method that works for you. You should also see if you can find a pre-test to take that is close to the real test.


Anxiety before a test is normal. However, you shouldn’t let your anxiety overcome you. If you aren’t confident going into a test, you may not do well. So you should try to calm yourself down and focus on being confident. 

Before a test, you could try to meditate. Focus on clearing your mind, which could help you to not feel stressed. According to TMS Clinics of Canada, eating a lot of sugar can make your anxiety worse. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables to have a level sugar intake. Right before going in or hopping onto a computer to take your exam, take deep breaths and focus on your heartbeat. You could also do a body scan from your head to your toes to see how your body is doing. This is a great method for calming you down.


University of the People recommends that when studying, be in an environment that isn’t distracting. Turn off your favorite shows and turn on quiet background music to get your brain focused. Be in a secluded space that doesn’t have any interruptions, like family members or phone notifications. In fact, turning off your phone while studying can help you to avoid going on social media when you get frustrated.

If people are bothering you, give them a schedule of when you need to be left alone. You could also put in headphones to avoid background noise. If your friends and family still won’t leave you alone, head to a library where quietness is a must.

Talk to your teacher to get some pointers on how to do well on your upcoming exam. See if they have any practice tests you can take. You could also go online and see what practice tests are available there, though don’t try to cheat.

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