Can practice tests be a useful study tool? Many educators and professionals agree that taking a practice exam before the big day can help test takers in many ways. Taking a practice test will help you prepare to ace your big test and give you confidence that you know the material.
1. Reducing Test Anxiety
Taking a practice exam is helpful for those who experience forms of test anxiety. Harvard University’s Academic Resource Center published an article on test anxiety and ways to reduce or help students with a bullet point on taking practice tests in preparation for a major exam. The National Institutes of Health has even produced a study that found that many participants cited a lack of practice as a factor in underperformance.
2. Learning to Identify Strengths and Weaknesses
Practice tests are also helpful in creating a more individualized study plan. These tests can help identify and analyze strengths and weaknesses for students to know what to better focus on in the review.
3. Saving Time
In this, taking a practice test can also help save time and better motivate students while studying. You will be able to tell which material you know best and which material you need to spend more time studying, and this will make a large impact on how you allocate your study time.
4. Learning Better Time Management Skills
Learning and applying better time management skills can also become a benefit of taking practice tests. Timed exams, such as TOEFL, ACT, and SAT, require test takers to move at a certain pace to complete the entire exam on time. By practicing outside of the official testing environment, students often develop a better understanding of the test and time limits and how to make sure they are moving at a good pace to ensure completion of the exam.
5. Understanding of the Types of Questions on the Test
A practice exam can also help to familiarize oneself with and better understand the types of questions that will be used on the test. If a question is unclear as to the intended type of response, the student can use this as an opportunity to seek clarification from their educator or trainer.
6. Familiarity with Test Materials
Doing this will also be an excellent opportunity to familiarize yourself with test materials. Identifying what materials will be needed to ensure success on test day, such as a calculator (if allowed), extra pens or pencils, and extra writing books or scratch paper.
7. Practice Under Less Pressure
In addition to the previous benefits mentioned, taking practice tests allow you to practice without pressure. By taking a practice exam outside of the official testing environment, you can take your time and in turn, feel more comfortable and better able to focus on the test and questions.
Take advantage of practice tests to prepare for your next big exam and feel more confident with the help and skills gained from utilizing this study resource recommended by educational professionals and staff from all walks of life.