Clinical psychologist Kübra Bozkurt, a clinical psychology specialist, stated that exam anxiety is defined as a psychological condition that causes intense stress and anxiety that occurs during exam times, which most people can experience. It keeps people awake psychologically and physiologically and helps them do a better job. However, experiencing excessive fear and anxiety negatively affects the person’s daily life and causes a decrease and deterioration in performance.
Clinical psychologist Bozkurt said: “The topics we have to study in an exam that we have to take are determined in advance” and said: “We prepare the subject matter, study and take the exam. Even though we have full knowledge of the subject, it is inevitable that we feel anxiety and excitement because unknown but unseen questions increase our stress.After the exam paper is in front of us and we start solving the questions, our anxiety starts to decrease and we have successfully passed the exam .
FEAR WHEN PREPARING FOR THE EXAM
Clinical psychologist Bozkurt pointed out that there are several situations where exam anxiety precedes exam success and continued his words as follows:
“As we study the subjects of the exam, we try to master the subject by using the most effective methods, and during the exam, we take the information we have memorized from memory and put it on paper . This cognitive process, the equivalent of which in English literature is retrieval of memory, allows us to receive encoded information to arrive at the correct answer to the question. However, this coding process, which may be easier for some people, becomes more difficult for those with performance anxiety. To make coding easier, we’ll break the topic down into parts and start with small, easy steps. Students with exam anxiety have difficulty dividing the subject to be studied into parts and cannot understand the difference between easy and difficult steps. Therefore, he tries to finish the subject in one go, but the encoding fails. Although he spends hours studying the subject, it does not mean that the subject is ‘understood’. A question that is not understood in the exam cannot be solved. The part so far is the processes that the student experiences with fear of failure for the exam. Unproductive hours are spent studying the subjects, but the student continues to feel unprepared. The task of dealing with this problem is simple. If your anxiety prevents you from planning a lesson, you can get help from your school teachers. With years of experience and knowledge, you can plan with your professors how to solve the problems in small and simple steps, and of course you have to stick to the program for success.”
FEAR DURING THE EXAM
Bozkurt defended that the anxiety felt during the exam was a bit different, saying: “This is also where the physical symptoms caused by anxiety begin. These symptoms are also present for the exam, but if they don’t learn how to deal with these symptoms, they take at the time of the examination. Let’s say that the exam topics have been sufficiently studied. If the anxiety and excitement have reached a level that the student cannot cope with, then certain cognitive processes are experienced respectively. Because of the anxiety he feels, the student cannot pay enough attention to the first question he sees and cannot recall the information he has encoded from his memory Because he cannot remember the answer to the question, his anxiety increases and he loses more time During this time, certain physical symptoms appear, symptoms such as palpitations, trembling in the hands and feet, rapid breathing, sweating, hot flashes/cold flashes, and a feeling of drowsiness accompany anxiety and increase stress. At this point it is useful to quickly review the exam questions, there can be both difficult and easy questions. Solving simple questions will ease your anxiety and boost your confidence. As you relax, your level of attention will increase and you will be able to return and answer the questions you were unable to solve at the beginning of the exam. When we say pandemic, earthquake, our way of life has changed radically. In our country, distance education has been done for a long time; The earthquake we recently experienced has caused serious negativity in education in many provinces. That is why our students who will take the exam, like all of us, were very impressed.”
SUGGESTIONS FOR MANAGING ANXIETY
Clinical psychologist Bozkurt explained what he can do for anxiety that can naturally occur before the exam and concluded his speech with the following statements:
Appropriate methods must be determined and managed calmly for situations such as using exam time effectively, determining which sections and questions to begin with, and not scrolling through the answer sheet. Of course, there are many methods, but you should choose the one that suits you best.
Comfortable clothing is preferred for the exam. Uncomfortable and tight-fitting clothing should be avoided and should not be worn on top of each other.
Water consumption and toilet needs must be planned.
During the past week, stay away from stress, negative news and activities that exhaust the body and mind; It is important to remain calm and peaceful. The day before the exam you can have beautiful dreams, relaxation and breathing exercises that will make them feel good.
Relaxation activities are preferred on the day and evening before the exam.
You must be able to sleep well and quality.
On the morning of the exam, light food that does not cause discomfort in the digestive system is preferable for dinner and breakfast.
If possible, stay away from social media, take a walk, and get together with your family and loved ones in a social setting.
Before the exam begins, take a few deep breaths and exhale slowly with a confident attitude. He should start with important questions that he can answer during the exam, skip the questions he doesn’t know and then come back, think that if he is distracted it is normal, but he can regain his attention later, and attention-harvesting techniques should be used. be applied quickly.
When anxiety is very high, a quick relaxation exercise and controlled breathing exercise can be done to reduce it.
Diagnoses such as performance anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, learning disability, depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and social anxiety disorder may also be present. That is why it is important to seek expert support.”