The Antidote to a Scary Exam

I have always had a little bit of test anxiety, especially if I know things are heavily graded. In high school, it wasn’t so bad because I knew I’d have plenty of opportunities to gain points back if I really had a low test score. In college, it’s a little different because you have fewer assessments and they tend to count more toward your overall grade. Needless to say, having all this in the back of my mind during the first exam here really terrified me.

I’m not going to lie, my first grade back was a little discouraging, but I was determined to persevere. First, I went to my professor’s office hours and found that they were incredibly supportive and walked me through the material that I had missed. They asked me how I studied and gave me a few pointers that might help me for the next time. They also suggested I might get a tutor.

I set up an appointment with a tutor at the Center for Academic Success a few days after speaking with my professor. At first I was nervous to go because I was worried they’d think less of me for scoring so low, but I was pleasantly surprised that they were very supportive. They told me that even people who make the dean’s list come to tutoring because ultimately it’s important to ask for help if you don’t understand the material at first.

When the next exam came around I sat down in our 24 hour study rooms at the library a few days in advance and implemented all that my tutor and professor had taught me. I noticed my anxiety was diminished after speaking with them and I felt confident during the exam. I’m proud to say I ended the year with a solid grade and overall have a easier time preparing for exams because I’ve realized our Christopher Newport community is striving for us to be successful.

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