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Anxiety Among Students

Anxiety Among Students :

Anxiety is a phenomenon that everyone encounters in their journey in life. It can be an irritable, tense, unsettling threat-causing but a vague event where an individual may feel dizziness, trouble concentrating, muscle tension, and many other symptoms. If an individual ignores it, then it may lead to anxiety neurosis.

Anxiety neurosis, and is the most common neurosis constituting almost 30 to 40 percent of neurotic disorders. Anxiety neurosis may further lead to the development of phobias or compulsive behaviors and other disorders.

Researchers have classified anxiety into various sub-categories like social anxiety, speech anxiety, and specific phobias. Therefore, we will concentrate on one of them, namely, exam or test anxiety.

Estimates are that between 40 and 60% of students have significant test anxiety that interferes with their performing up to their capability. There were a significant amount of tests and research conducted to understand the scenario and here’s a brief sum-up of many things that were noticed and deserve to be known by many.

Pressures to do well at school are increasing. Tests determine grades and grades determine college acceptances and future high-level employment. Grades also play a large role in the way a student is viewed by peers and teachers.

Research indicates that some students benefit from the rush of adrenaline that comes from the nervousness related to testing situations. However, while there is no good data on the matter, it is estimated that 40-60% of students are negatively affected by test anxiety.

This may mean that an individual is overly worried about the exams and unable to fully concentrate on the goal.

Its symptoms include-

  • Sleep disturbances
  • Discouragement
  • Extreme sensitivity
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Difficulty in making decisions
  • Excessive sweating

More about Test and Examination Anxiety Among Students :

When there is pressure to do well in an exam or when people experience intense fear or worry before giving an exam, it is known as test anxiety or exam anxiety. Test or Examination anxiety is a type of performance anxiety where an individual might have an event where performance matters a lot. Test Anxiety can create headaches and stomachaches or any other psychosomatic pains. Some students may experience that their heart is beating very fast, or they are sweating when the exam is about to happen. As students pass to senior classes, their need to achieve good marks increases, and due to this burden their levels of anxiety also increase. Secondary school students like students from classes 10th, 11th, and 12th feel nervousness, fear, tension, and stress because the competition is increasing day by day.

Negative consequences of Exam Anxiety Among Students :

Some researchers in this field conclude that students who have high test anxiety make more effort than those students with low test anxiety. Some students with test anxiety have good studying skills, but some do not have it. Test anxiety also affects the student’s social, emotional, and behavioral development, as well as students, start feeling negative about themselves and the schools. It has been observed that almost twenty percent of the students having high test anxiety, quit school before even graduating due to repeated failures. And there are studies carrying reports that students even commit suicide due to being preoccupied with exams. Some students experience genuine, deep-rooted problems in examinations. Their mind goes blank, they get the shakes, their hands go numb, and they suffer from any other number of sudden disabilities.

Research carried out by Scientists and what they found out :

Regina Ann Mary et al. (2014) conducted a study to analyze the level of state anxiety among students on board exams in Tamil Nadu, India. Results showed increased levels of test anxiety among boys and 12th-grade students.

Anxiety Among Students   

Sibnath Deb, Esben Strodi, and Jiandong Sun (2014) examined the prevalence of academic stress and exam Anxiety Among Students. They studied the associations with socio-economic and study-related factors. The study was conducted on 400 students in Kolkata. 35% and 37% of students reported high academic stress and exam anxiety, respectively.

John Love Joy (2013) conducted a study on 80 male and 53 female students in Tamil Nadu, India to find out the level of Anxiety Among Students (pre and post-test) stages to study the performance of students on test-related problems. Findings showed that during exams students become anxious and the threat created by tests distracts them from giving their best.

The main purpose of these quantitative studies was to find out the prevalence of anxiety among students during their exams. In addition to this, the difference between anxiety levels of male and female students was taken into consideration. For this purpose.

  • It is concluded that almost 30 percent of the students were having moderately high test anxiety.
  • 12% and 6% of the total were having high test anxiety and extremely high test anxiety among students respectively.
  • It has been observed that students are not willing to recognize anxiety and also their struggles remain unnoticed, leading to further dangerous complications.

Sex was considered an independent variable. It was assumed that there would be no significant difference in the anxiety levels of male and female students. The obtained results have not supported the hypothesis that there will be no difference between boys and girls.

Results revealed that males had higher mean scores. The total score of male students is 150.2 and the mean is 3.004 whereas the total score of female students is 140.6 and the mean is 2.812. Therefore, exam anxiety of males is higher than females.

When researchers interviewed some of the students regarding why they feel anxious before and during the exams, students gave various reasons for it. Some mentioned that due to lack of preparation. Some students had disturbances in their sleep patterns due to stress and anxiety so they are unable to perform well in exams.

Girls mentioned that their reason for being anxious is that they feel fearful of not getting good marks and not being able to make their parents feel proud. School students with higher levels of anxiety easily become frustrated or irritable, they may have difficulty concentrating on their exams and completing their work on time.

They become frightened that they won’t be able to do well. Their fear of failing exams or not achieving good marks according to their need may result in school avoidance.

Senior classes are considered a bridge to a career. Higher anxiety among students make great efforts and give extra time than those students with normal anxiety levels, in a fear of not getting jobs or not being selected for desirable courses and colleges.

There was a recent study that had some very serious limitations but was carried out and it produced some amazing results that give a little insight into the anxiety among students carry with them – Here are the limitations :

  • Only a hundred students participated in the study which is very few to conclude.
  • In this study, only one variable, that is, gender is taken into consideration.
  • Students were in such a setting that could have caused anxiety to them and this could interfere with how they responded to the questionnaire.

Here’s the summary of the Research on Anxiety Among Students

Anxiety Among Students
Almost 54 out of 100 students are suffering from high normal test anxiety and moderately high-test anxiety of which 24 are female students and 30 are male students. Different levels of anxiety were present in each grade (10th, 11th, 12th) and male students were suffering more with extreme levels of anxiety. 
School administrators, school counselors, and parents of the students should be flexible enough to understand these adolescents and make the school environment comfortable and friendly for the students. Further research on strategies is being carried out to reduce examination anxiety and academic stress to diminish the burden for this age group. 

Here’s How can we fight the long battle with Anxiety Among Students :


Study skills to enhance Test preparation – 

  • Managing Time 
  • Outlining, Synthesizing, and using Graphic organizers while taking notes in class.
  • Setting goals while studying to increase motivation to stay on task
  • Taking easy-to-understand quizzes.
  •  Using reviews and study group sessions. 
Advice to Teachers for Anxiety Among Students  :
  • Enable students to ask clarifying questions and for extra support.
  • Have students use study logs to encourage study habits.
  • Give practice tests and monitor levels of test anxiety to identify students with test anxiety.
  • encourage them to seek help from school psychologists or counselors.
For students identified as needing special accommodations, schools are expected to and should provide modifications such as untimed or extended time, spaces that are not distracting, small group administration, oral administration, etc. 
School psychologists, counselors, as well as teachers, are encouraged to identify experiencing test anxiety among students and take steps to counter their negative thinking and comparisons with others. Teaching students relaxation techniques. 
Parents are reminded to provide a healthy environment for studying. This includes providing guidance and support for homework and test preparation, encouraging students to do their best, but also avoiding excessive pressure for academic performance, and enabling relaxation. 
  • Given that tests remain an institutionalized facet of the education system, giving students practice tests at appropriate times.
  • Schools should counsel parents of students with test anxiety about ways to avoid exacerbating the problem.
Parents are good motivators for students to do well, they should not put so many expectations and pressures on students. Fears of disappointing parents add stress and the additional pressure heightens anxiety.

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