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Testing Anxiety Plagues Middle Tennessee Students

By MTN Reporter: TJ Warner

In a world where standardized tests reign supreme, a hidden foe lurks in every classroom: testing anxiety. Mid-state high school teacher Darla Tollison says this time of the year; she worries more about her student’s well-being than their test scores.


“I don't focus necessarily on that test, I focus more on the kids,” She said. Darla says that even though students know the material they are being tested on, they can get so worked up that they freeze. Students can struggle with anxiety even on simple tests. Timed tests with short deadlines can also prove difficult.


High School student Anna Maples agrees that some classmates can’t handle the pressure.


“I have had multiple friends talk to me and know what the answers are; they just can't focus long enough to put anything down on paper,” Maples said.


Research by the UCLA School of Mental Health contends that some 40% to 60% of students have testing anxiety so significant it interferes with their performance grades. LSU Health recommends that those with testing anxiety try different relaxation techniques when anxiety occurs.

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