Taking the exam

Managing stress, preparing material and questions

After long weeks of studying, the exam session has arrived. Since it can be quite stressful at times, here are a few tips to help you make the exams go as smoothly as possible.


Preparing your workplace (right before the exam)

  • The workplace should be well arranged and tidy.
  • The materials needed for the exam (sheets, calculator, course book, water, etc., if allowed) should be prepared in advance.
  • If the exam is online, plan a quiet place with optimal internet access and make sure you will not be disturbed.
  • A short meditation just before the exam can help you concentrate and improve your performance.


Managing stress

If you feel stressed and anxious during the exam, consider taking deep breaths in and out slowly to relieve the stress.

More information about Stress Management.


Read the instructions and questions

Take the time to read the instructions before you begin the exam. This will allow you to understand the exam procedures, such as the amount of time available, materials required/allowed, and other useful information. It is important to read all the questions once. This will give you an overview of the exam content.

  • Make sure you manage the time available according to the number of questions.
  • Start with the questions you are most comfortable with or those worth the most points so that you do not get caught up in time.
  • In the case of an MCQ (multiple choice question) exam, do not read the answer options until you have thought of an answer yourself. The answers sometimes encourage analysis rather than relying on what we have learned from the course. Proceed by process of elimination and first exclude answers you are sure are not the right ones.


First write down the answers on a piece of paper

This will give you an idea of the structure of what you want to say. It will help clarify your answers and make them more precise. Also write down any thoughts that come to mind while reading the question so that you will not forget them later when writing. 


Identify and explain the terms used

When writing your answers, make sure that you mention the sources as well as the technical terms used. It is actually important that you show how in depth your knowledge goes.


Reread the exam

Schedule 5-10 minutes to read through your exam again, if possible. This will allow you to correct any spelling mistakes, complete your work, and possibly clarify individual aspects. 


Checklist : Prepared for the exam session?

  • I have participated in the last courses of the semester.
  • I have identified the learning objectives and know the testing procedures.
  • I have completed and structured my class notes.
  • I have designed and prioritized a weekly schedule for my revisions.
  • I have set precise and achievable goals.
  • I can handle distractions in order to study with focus.
  • I have a healthy lifestyle (sleep, exercise, hobbies).
  • I take regular breaks
  • I know techniques to reduce anxiety and manage stress



Manage distractions, increase focus, improve organization and create To-do lists, all with apps that help you manage your tasks.

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Unifr offers 

Sport & offres de relaxation


Psychological support in case of fear and blockage, procrastination and stress management

Workshops on stress management (stress management, strategies against stress and anxiety during studies, motivation)

Coaching and support for organization/planning in difficult personal times

Digital Skills Self-study online courses