It’s test-taking time and who wouldn’t want to guarantee success in ALL subjects? Luckily, there are several strategies that can help you to regulate your nerves and focus come test day. These helpful tips will improve information recall and processing speed.

If you utilize these tips along with bringing a positive attitude and a well-rested and well-fed YOU to school, then your test-taking skills will be unstoppable!

Techniques for success in ANY exam:

1. Breathe! Close your eyes and take a deep breath IN. Slowly release your OUT breath. This will center your body’s energy and allow you to distribute blood flow and energy to the parts of your brain that help you focus and give your best.
2. Track Time. Find out how long you have for the test and how many questions will be on the test. Divide the minutes by the number of questions. This simple tip will help you know how much time to spend on each question. Place a mark next to the question you should be on at your midpoint check-in to help you stay on track.

[60 ➗ 40 = 1.5 min. ]

3. Brain Dump. When you first receive the test, immediately write down any information you have that comes to mind that you are afraid you may not remember (i.e. formulas, dates, names, facts, etc.).

4. Read ALL Questions. Look at all questions and see which ones you’ll need to plan more time for (i.e. fill in the blank or multiple choice). Pay attention to details so you are sure of what is being asked. Also, clues for some answers are sometimes in other test questions.

5. Mark it, Move on & Revisit. Don’t waste time on a question you think you don’t know. The building anxiety your mind creates could inhibit your focus for the rest of the test. Mark it, move on and then go back to that question after you complete the rest of the test. You may have the answer now!

6. Don’t Read the ANSWERS first. With multiple choice questions, think of the answer before you read the options. Then, cross out answers you know are wrong. NOTE: Trust your mind; your first impression is often correct. Reading the answers FIRST can play tricks on your recall. A suggested answer may take your mind off track and lead you away from the correct answer.

7. Check Your Work. If you finish early, use your remaining time to double-check your answers or proofread and revise essays.

About Skills 4 Life:

Skills 4 Life Pediatric Occupational Therapy offers a broad range of pediatric occupational therapy services to help your child master age-appropriate developmental skills, become more independent, increase academic success & develop confidence. The experts at Skills 4 Life specialize in handwriting, keyboarding & executive function coaching, but also work with children on social & emotional learning, motor skills, self-regulation strategies & activities of daily living. Skills 4 Life Pediatric Occupational Therapy offers your child a safe, compassionate environment to learn the critical skills they need to be successful. Learn more about our team & services at, or you can contact our office by email at or by phone at 303.351.1828 for a free consultation.