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Multiple Choice Tests

Tips to reduce test anxiety and boost confidence

Tips for taking multiple choice tests

To help ease test day anxiety, Sylvan Learning Center offers students the following multiple choice test-taking tips:
  • Relax. It's only a test.
  • Do a quick review of the entire test - see what kind and how many questions there are.
  • Try to manage your time. Keep a close eye on the clock so you don't run out of time.
  • Make sure you read all directions clearly and carefully.
  • Answer ALL questions. If it's a multiple-choice test, even if you're not sure of the answer, it's better to guess than to leave the answer blank.
  • Go through and answer the easy questions first - they take less time. Save the time for the difficult questions.
READ MORE: Click here for tips on open-ended tests
  • Can't figure out the answer? See if you can eliminate at least one obviously wrong answer.
  • If you finish early, review your answers and be sure you didn't miss any questions.
  • Mark your answers clearly. If you change your answer, erase it completely - you wouldn't want the teacher to mark it wrong because you answered two!
  • For true or false questions: go with your instinct - it's often right. And look for trigger words like always and never. There are few things you can say never or always about, so the answer is probably false.
  • On reading tests, scan for key words that relate to the question and always be on the lookout for the main idea and for answers to who, what, where, when, why and how.
READ MORE: Click here for more tips on essay tests
  • On language arts tests, quickly eliminate known misspellings. For fill-in sentences, read the entire sentence and look for context clues before trying each possible answer.
  • On math tests, use scratch paper and write down the key information you need to solve the problems, such as number sentences and equations. Check answers by reversing, i.e. adding to check subtraction.