1. Spotting Questions:
It is a general tendency of the students to spot questions from previous years’ question papers. But this is a malpractice. The students are actually supposed to spot the important topics. Their learning should be topic oriented and not question oriented. This is one of the most common mistakes done during exams.
2. Cramming Too Much Information Into Memory:
Our brains can often only retain 10% to 20% of the information that we read. So, instead of trying to memorize, you should concentrate on understanding what is written in those pages. You should be able to explain them in your own words!
3. Panicking Before Or During A Paper:
If you experience anxiety and panic, you can never give your best. One of the worst things that you can do before and during a test or exam is to lose confidence. Once you panic, your mind is in frenzy and your performance will not be up to the mark.
4. Arriving Late For A Paper:
Latecomers may sometimes be barred from sitting for the paper. Even if you do get to sit for the paper, much precious time would have been lost. On top of that, your mind would still be reeling from the rush.
5. Failing To Scan Through The Questions Once:
Always scan through a paper before you begin writing. Give yourself about 2 to 5 minutes to read through all the questions. Check every page of the paper to make sure that you do not miss any question.
6. Failing To Allocate Time For Each Question:
Some questions deserve more time than others. Always devote your time to each question based on the marks allocated to it. A question carrying 10 marks should be given more time than a question carrying 3 marks. And remember to bring along a watch or clock to time yourself.
7. Starting With The Most Difficult Question:
Always start with the easy questions. It makes you feel good about the paper and boosts your confidence. Attempting a tough question is a bad start to a paper. Your mind gets stumbled at the very beginning of the paper. You rack your brains trying to come out with the answers for that agonizing question. You begin to feel exasperated. Your mind loses its calm.
8. Jumping Straight Into Answering A Question Without Proper Planning:
Proper planning ensures that you have considered all the major aspects of the question before you start to write your answer. It would save you much time later when you write the answer. A carefully planned answer would also get more marks than an unplanned or poorly planned answer.
9. Misinterpreting A Question:
Misinterpreting a question can cost you dearly in a test or exam. This is especially if the question is worth 10 or 20 marks out of 100. You would be spending precious time producing an incorrect answer. The only way to avoid mistake i.e. of misinterpreting question is to read through the question at least twice.
10. Producing An Incoherent Answer:
One of the worst things you can do to put off the teacher or examiner marking your paper is to write incoherently. That is, your thoughts and ideas are badly expressed and very difficult for the marker to understand. In short, your writing does not make sense.
The only way to make sure that you do not write incoherently in a test or exam paper is to practice writing answers more often.
11. Not Sure How To Start Or End An Essay:
How much more time are you going to waste trying to figure out a superb start to your answer? Just get to the point! Remember this is a test (or exam) paper! Time is precious!
While having a good writing style is important, the emphasis here is about the flow of your ideas.
As long as your last paragraph ends your essay nicely, it would not be a problem.
12. Writing Illegibly:
Illegible handwriting is a common mistake done during exam and is a cause of low test and exam scores for many students. Terrible handwriting makes reading extremely tough and slow for the marker. It can even put off the marker. Some markers give up beyond a certain point and skip parts of the writing. This means that your answers may not be completely read and graded accordingly. You lose precious marks.
13. Failing To Check Your Answers:
Always strive to complete a paper at least 10 to 15 minutes ahead of time. Then make use of this spare time to check through your paper at least twice. You may be pleasantly surprised that you can spot an error or two in your answers, and that you have the time needed to make the required corrections. In this way you can learn to avoid last minute mistakes made by you.
14. Failing To Bring Along Required Stationery Or Items:
List down all the required stationary and items that you will need for all your papers. On the day of a paper, look through this list and get the required stationary and items ready before you leave your house. Where possible, bring along at least two of each item and stationary you need, in case the first one malfunctions suddenly.
15. Forgetting To Write Down Your Names And Other Personal Particulars:
Make sure that you write down your name and other personal details in every page of your answer script. Do check that everything is in order before you submit your paper is the last but not the least common mistakes done during exam. So try to avoid it.