link Doing Well On A Math Test

Four students work together a desk in a classroom over a laptop.

Successful at Testing

Being successful in taking a math test is not merely  a matter of studying. There are many factors that that affect your ability to do well.

  • First, prepare for the test properly. Look at Preparing for a Math Test for helpful hints. 
  • In order to minimize mistakes on a test, look at six types of test-taking errors to avoid and how to prevent them. 
  • Bring all necessary materials to the test: 
    • At least 2 sharp pencils.
    • Good eraser.
    • Scientific calculator, if allowed.
    • Ruler (or straight edge) and compass, if needed.
    • Turn off cell phones during the exam. 
  • Look over the test for length and difficulty of problems. 
    • Determine the average time to devote to each problem.
    • Manage time during the test
      • Limit the time spent on each problem.
      • Know how much time is left until the end of the test.
    • Work on the easiest problems first. 
  • Do a "data dump:" Write down all formulas and important ideas when you first get the test, while your memory is fresh and so you can refer to them during the test. 
  • Read all directions carefully. Follow the directions. 
  • Show all steps of your work on the test. You can get often get partial credit for solving part of a problem correctly. 
  • Check your work! 
    • Are your answers accurate?
    • Did you complete the problem?
    • Did you answer all the questions? 
  • Do not leave the test room early! Use the extra time to check your work again if you finish early. 
  • Relax. If you feel anxious or frustrated during the test: 
    • Stop working, put down your pencil, close your eyes.
    • Take slow, deep breaths.
    • Think positively and remove all negative thoughts.
    • Open your eyes and get back to work.