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Mock exams are great for students’ brains
July 10, 2016, 10:17 am

Mock tests are nothing but trial exams that people take before appearing for the final exam so that they can assess their level of preparation. Mock exams are usually taken by students who are about to appear for an important exam. From Class 10 Board Exams to the CAT, every course has mock tests of its own. These exams are extremely helpful to any student looking to do well on these tests. Here are five ways mock tests can help students make sure they are on the path to exam success:

Motivation for early revision: Research suggests that a majority of students consider themselves to be procrastinators, with many doing so regularly and to a level that is considered as a problem. If exams are held on yearly basis, their value reduces, while on the other hand, having a mock exam halfway through the year, students will get an opportunity to focus their attention and efforts earlier rather than later.

Practicing effective revision strategies: Mock exams let students practice revision strategies that are proven to be more helpful. Some of them include: Spacing out revision sessions, teaching the material to someone else and switching between topics every now and then. Another technique called ‘elaborative interrogation’, where one asks oneself ‘why?’ This method helps students remember a large portion of their material more affectively compared to others.

Improving knowledge: Testing yourself is an effective way to improve your knowledge and ability to recall information. Instead of seeing an exam as a potentially threatening event or as some sort of judgment on your ability, it would be helpful if you will see mock tests as a handy way of improving knowledge and memory.

Practicing under exam conditions: Pressure can do funny things to students. For some, it can lead to nerves, anxiety, frustration and sloppy mistakes, culminating in a poor performance. For others, pressure allows them to concentrate more, work harder and perform better. It takes time and practice to perform well under pressure. If the final exams are the first time students experience these conditions, it is lottery as to how they react.

Mock exams help students figure out and practice what works best for them. Techniques to manage exam nerves could include actively slowing down, channeling any nerves into helpful behavior or listening to some relaxing music beforehand.

Identifying topics that need attention: Doing mocks early enough in the year gives you time before the real thing to target areas that need improvement. Mock exam results can identify how best to spend the coming months for students. Once these areas are identified, it is then a case of putting in the hours. It is not enough to think about what you need to do better, it is the action and the doing that really makes a difference. Being comfortable and confident enough to ask someone else for help, be it a teacher, parent or friend, is a big part of having a growth mindset. Mock exams can be used as a way of getting students to feel comfortable receiving feedback, which paves the way for further improvement and learning.

To conclude, mock exams, if framed right, can be incredibly beneficial for students. Helping them to see that is part of the challenge, will make them to start revising early and practice effective revision strategies to improve their knowledge, familiarize themselves with pressure and act as a guide to move forward in life.

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