Education

Tips to Reduce Anxiety on AP Test Day

The College Board wants to give students across the nation (and the world) the chance to succeed on AP exams. They offer several opportunities for you to become familiar with testing procedures before test day, including taking full-length practice tests at their centers. Taking practice tests is an excellent way to prepare; however, some people may still feel nervous when it is time to take the real deal. So, what can you do about these nerves? Check our Tips to Reduce Anxiety on AP Test Day!

Bring a snack with you on AP test day.

Your body has been asking for food since 6 or 7 am. However, you are trying to stay focused on the task at hand. You know that if you eat something now, it will be another 10-20 minutes before your food settles and your stomach quiets down enough to focus again. So you push through, ignoring the rumbles in your belly, but then your mind goes completely blank in the middle of a critical math section! You have no idea how long it took for your brain to forget everything that was up until this moment, but it’s too late now. You can’t go back and re-learn those equations, so you’ll have to guess your way through the rest of that section and keep moving on.

Top: A great way to start test day is with a full stomach!

Bottom: Make sure you choose snacks to keep your energy levels high without causing stomach discomfort during the exam.

What do you think would happen if, instead, you had eaten a granola bar or some trail mix before walking into the testing center? Getting stuck like this is very slim (unless hunger has changed how your mind works). If you eat something small enough to digest slowly but still give yourself lasting energy, it’s more likely that you’ll be able to maintain your focus throughout the whole test.

Revise everything that your AP tutors has taught you so far

There is no point studying so much but not revising. By giving few hours on revision can make you hyper charged on the AP test day. Try to remeber the tricks and tips that your AP tutor has taught you so far!

Listen to music on your way to the AP testing center to reduce Anxiety on AP Test Day

When you are in a car, on public transportation, or walking outside, try listening to soothing instrumental music (classical or “new age,” maybe?). Music can change our moods, and this is why some people like listening to it before they get on stage for their piano recital. It gives them confidence knowing that they’ll get through 6 minutes of intense concentration without getting too nervous; they know it will be okay because they practiced at home beforehand. The same goes for taking an AP exam! You may not want to be listening to dance remixes while you take photosynthesis, but something calming/steadying is perfect for test day.

Treat yourself right after the AP exam 

You started studying for this test 6 months ago, maybe more! Some people have never even opened their AP Biology textbook, but you knew it was essential to prepare, so you worked up a sweat in your brain with these facts and formulas. Now that the exam is finally over give yourself some time to celebrate! Do something fun with whoever helped you study most (parents, teachers, siblings). You deserve it!(Also, feel free to reward yourself by buying that new bag or accessory that has been catching your eye, do what works best for you )

Even if the AP test did not go well today, you could still feel accomplished something.

There is no need to be discouraged because there will always be another test; this one just wasn’t the “one.” If physics was the subject that gave you headache, you can get tutoring at MyPhysicsBuddy.

At least you tested your skills in AP

It was stressful, but even if you did not score that high on your AP exam, at least you know what you are capable of. That’s one step closer to finding out which exams push your limits! So maybe next time (and there will be a next time), hopefully, the test won’t seem as scary.

The College Board hopes that these tips can help everyone nervous about taking an AP exam for the first time or those who have struggled in the past and want some guidance on succeeding during their next attempt(s).

With these 3 tips and a little bit of studying, you should be able to overcome any exam-day jitters. Best wishes and good luck!

(Make sure to watch it through for the perfect tie-in at the end.

I don’t know if this will help or not because I’m just now reading it, but here is my attempt at some. 

Last-minute tips to Reduce Anxiety on AP Test Day

1) Try to stay positive during the AP test

your best effort matters more than a good grade 

2) Know your limits

do say yes if you mean no 

3) If you are incredibly anxious

remember that the test is finite; it must end at some point 

4) Don’t compare your performance on one AP test with anyone else’s.

You are you and no one else. 

5) Trust yourself to do your best

on this test because that is what you have been doing for every practice exam! 

6) Don’t worry about time during the AP test

You aren’t graded on how fast or slow you go but on what knowledge you possess. 

7) Remember to breathe!!

It has helped me so much the last month before the AP exams I have taken so far. Check this article for more info on breathing. 

8 )Most of all–don’t panic!!!

(This might be easier if I hadn’t already completed two AP tests today -.-) Good luck, guys!

Comment from a fellow student that may lighten your mood:

YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I am taking the AP Biology test in about an hour, and my mom is making me go out to eat with her after my exam is over because she says it relaxes her when she takes tests (she’s a dentist). I think it’s crazy that we live in such a pressured society where we feel like we have to do so well on these exams for college. But whatever. It is what it is. 

MEB wish you All the best for your AP test!

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