">Exam Anxiety | Academic Group

Exam Anxiety

Your child is often faced with a series of exams or tests at the end of term or semester, which are usually scheduled closely together. This can lead to great stress for students – and those who live with them!

What is exam stress?

For some people, the increased pressure around exam time may lead to them experiencing stress symptoms much more readily than others. Symptoms of stress vary from person to person, but a stress response is a normal physical response to events that upset your balance in some way.

What causes exam stress?

Exam stress is a natural reaction to pressure caused by a number of factors including:

  • Pessimism or negative self-talk
  • Unrealistic expectations (either of the student or the parents)
  • Unpreparedness
  • Life transitions
  • Family issues and/or relationship difficulties
  • Performance anxiety.

What can parents and guardians do about exam stress?

One of the best things parents or guardians can do if their child is experiencing exam stress is to try to be as supportive and tolerant as possible.

We’ve put together a list of strategies that may help young people to manage exam stress. We’ve also included some tips on how to help your child deal with stress on and after the exam day.

Effective study and learning habits

Parents and guardians can help reduce the exam stress of their child by helping them establish effective study and learning habits.

  • Help your child find a quiet place to study without distractions. Make sure their study area is uncluttered so they can focus better.
  • Encourage your child to find out exactly what the test involves – Consult the syllabus and course outlines; Consult past test papers to help them understand what to expect.
  • Encourage your child to ask for help or ask their teacher for clarity if they are unsure of something or if they feel confused.
  • Offer help sometimes. It can be useful having someone to listen or practise with.

Healthy sleeping and eating habits

  • Encourage your child to stick to a routine of going to bed at a reasonable time. They should avoid late night TV shows or movies and extended time on social media.
  • Motivate them to eat regularly and make time to have fun and exercise.
  • Help them to cut back on coffee or any other stimulants which they may be using, as these can increase agitation. Encourage them to drink lots of water instead.
  • Remind them to take time out when they eat, rather than carrying on with study.
  • Plan meals which include: fresh fruit, veggies, cereals, grains, nuts and protein – they are all good for the brain and blood sugar levels.
  • Encourage them to eat when they get hungry. This keeps blood sugar and hydration levels steady.
  • Avoid junk food if possible. It will bring a sudden sugar high which will fall away quickly, leaving a person feeling tired.

Relaxation ideas to help your child cope with exam stress

  • Always encourage your child to relax before they go to bed after concentrating for long periods of time. Activities such as reading a short story may help them unwind and sleep better.
  • Encourage them to go out for a walk, run or do some other exercise they enjoy.
  • Teach them relaxation techniques such as listening to some gentle music, getting them lying down, closing their eyes and taking a deep breath while visualising a calming scene such as a deserted beach.
  • Encourage them to use the app Mindful Meditation
  • Help your child to develop a positive mindset by encouraging them to visualise success – this can really help with self-confidence.
  • Avoid rushing on the day of the exam by organising and packing everything they need to take with them the night before.
  • Taking a shower before, during or after study can be relaxing and refreshing.

Post-exam tip

If your child does not do well in the exam and they feel upset about it, reassure them that there is always a second chance and passing an exam is only part of the story. It may be helpful to take some time to discuss any problems they had so they can avoid them next time.

How Academic Group Can Help You

Academic Group offers a range of programs designed to help students reduce workloads, decrease stress levels, and maximise exam marks.

Holiday Revision Programs

Our Holiday Revision Programs are perfect if your child is wanting revision of their ATAR subjects and review of topics in preparation for exams.

Your child will increase their understanding, receive fresh insights and gain intensive revision of their subject in a time-effective manner. Your child will work through practice exam style questions and gain feedback from our experienced teachers on how to improve their work. Find out more.

Exam Boost Seminars

Exam Boost Seminars are a popular choice for time-poor Year 11 and 12 students who want subject specific, targeted, exam help in the weeks before their exams.

In one day, the Seminars pack in six hours of exam focused teaching from a WACE exam marker, with the purpose of boosting your child’s exam performance. Find out more.

ATAR Tuition Help

ATAR Tuition Help is an ideal and affordable way for your child to access top quality and experienced teachers during the term.

Classes are in a setting that encourages learning and will ensure your child receives individual help on a regular basis throughout the year. Find out more.

ATAR Master Classes

Our Master Classes are specialised courses designed to help students maximise their grades and strive for the elite A and A+ scores.

Master Classes offer an alternative to our Weekend Tuition classes as they are based on a weekly teaching program. Classes are open to students from all schools who wish to receive extended learning in their ATAR courses.

Each week, the teacher will focus on a particular syllabus topic; your child will get in-depth explanations, examples with time to practice questions and receive individualised feedback and expert coaching from our Master Class teacher. Find out more.

Our Teachers

Each of our programs are developed and delivered by current and experienced teachers – many of whom are textbook authors, as well as writers and markers of official Year 12 exams.

Our teachers are sourced from the top performing schools across the state and are handpicked for their professional achievements and high-level communication skills.

Programs we offer to help exam anxiety

  • Holiday Revision Program
  • Exam Boost Seminars
  • Tuition Help
  • Master Classes

Tips for minimizing your child's exam stress

  • Help your child find a quiet place to study without distractions. Make sure their study area is uncluttered so they can focus better.
  • Avoid rushing on the day of the exam by organising and packing everything they need to take with them the night before.
  • Always encourage your child to relax before they go to bed after concentrating for long periods of time. Activities such as reading a short story may help them unwind and sleep better.
  • Remind them to take time out when they eat, rather than carrying on with study.
  • Encourage your child to find out exactly what the test involves - Consult the syllabus and course outlines; are there past test papers they can look at to help them understand what to expect?
  • Encourage your child to ask for help or ask their teacher for clarity if they are unsure of something or if they feel confused.
  • Help your child to develop a positive mindset by encouraging them to visualise success - this can really help with self-confidence.
  • Encourage them to eat when they get hungry. This keeps blood sugar and hydration levels steady.