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Open-ended Tests

Tips to reduce test anxiety and boost confidence

Tips for taking open-ended tests

To help ease test day anxiety, Sylvan Learning Center offers students the following open-ended test-taking tips:
  • Do a quick scan of the test. How many questions are there? How many points is each question worth? Remember, a question that's four points versus 10 will require less detail.
  • Write your answers clearly. You don't want to lose points because the teacher can't read your writing!
  • Do the easy questions first, then, come back to the difficult ones. Sometimes, the questions you can't answer immediately make sense when you look at them a second time.
READ MORE: Click here for more tips on multiple choice tests
  • Don't lose track of time. You want to be able to answer all of the questions.
  • Proofread - did you answer the question? Check for spelling, punctuation or capitalization errors.
  • Plan out what you want to say. It can't hurt to jot down a couple of quick notes so you know the direction of your answers.
  • Mark any questions that you need to come back to. If you want to add some additional information to the answer, make a note, so you remember to review it.
READ MORE: Click here for more tips on essay tests
  • On reading questions, if you're asked to write an answer that draws a conclusion, use details from the passage to support your idea.
  • For math questions, jot down what you know about the word problem and maybe draw a picture to help you solve it. Make sure that your answers make sense - if the question asks how many miles, make sure that your answer is in miles, not feet or meters.