How Taking Online Exams Can Become Easy

Many students become frustrated and confused when they have to take an online exam. They do not know how to prepare, what skills to use, or what strategies to apply in order to get the highest results. However, such anxiety should not overwhelm and cause troubles. If to give it a thought, an online exam is hardly different from any other test that you had to take in a class at some point of your academic life. Like any other exam, the online one requires preparation, a careful reading of questions, and full concentration. Unlike during other exams, you do not have to see the faces of panicking classmates and distract at them, which is beneficial for your grade. Still, coping with an online test might be difficult unless you have our helpful tips, of course!


Preparation Stage

Understand the guidelines. You should clearly realize when, where, and how you have to pass the test. So, be sure to find out several things by asking yourself a few questions. When will the exam take place? More specifically, what are the exact date and time? Can the exam be taken during a certain time window only, i.e., from 1pm to 5 pm? Is there a time limit? Where is it possible to take a test? Can you be at home or have to use a computer in a library? Are there any other factors that you should obligatory consider before taking the test?

  • Find out the format. You should know what to expect. Therefore, ask your professor what kind of questions you will have to answer during the exam, i.e., multiple-choice questions, short answers, essay questions, filling in the gaps, or a sort of combination?
  • Practice. If there is a chance to make a practice test, do not waste the opportunity and obligatory take it! Try asking your instructor for it or search for questions in the textbook.
  • Prepare your device. Regardless of whether you are going to use your laptop or PC in a computer laboratory on the campus, ensure the device is ready to the test. If it is a laptop, check whether it is charged. Check Internet connection. Make sure the necessary software is installed. In a nutshell, do everything that you need to do to avoid problems and misunderstandings in the very last minute before the exam.
  • Work with your textbook. There are cases when professors allow using a textbook during the exam. Nevertheless, such a permission is useless unless you know for sure what and where to look for. So, get ready and revise all the materials studied.
  • Find a perfect spot. You should select a nice place for you to feel comfortable and minimize the potential distractions. For this reason, turn off your smartphone or at least notifications. Turn off TV, radio, or other gadgets that produce noise. If there are family members or roommates around, let them know that you have an exam and should not be disturbed for an hour or so.
  • Select time. If there is a rigid timeframe for the exam, this tip is not applicable. Yet, if you have a possibility to choose the time when to pass the online test, pick up a period with the lowest risk of being disturbed.
  • Gather materials. Collect all the tools, books, notes, pieces of paper, a pen, i.e., whatever you might need during the exam. You will not have time to do it during the exam.
  • Relax. Log in into your account, take a deep breath to calm down, and with clear thoughts, click on "Start."

Exam Stage

  • Keep track of time. You should focus not only on questions but the time given for the test too. Still, to simplify this process, you may set an alarm, for instance, for it to ring 15 minutes before deadline expiration.
  • Save copies. If there is a chance, print out your questions and answers, save them to the device, or just make screenshots. Any copies will prove extremely handy in case you experience some technical issues while exam and will not be able to submit the answers.
  • Use MS Word. It can be helpful when addressing short answer or essay questions. MS Word is easier to use and allows more changes to be made to the text. Then, just copy and paste the answers in the corresponding text box.
  • Be careful with tabs. If you are allowed to search for some information online during the exam, do not use the next tab or any other tabs in the same browser window. You risk to lose your answers as well as a chance to get a high grade. Just open a new browser window and use it.
  • Do not panic. There is likelihood that some technical issue might occur. You must not panic, but you definitely must to contact your professor immediately. If there is an error message, take a screenshot and send to the instructor.
  • Check before submitting. It is a crucial thing to do. Not only you can spot incorrectly answered questions but also those that, for example, were skipped by accident. So, give your work a careful look before you hit a "Submit" button.

Review Stage

  • Assess own performance. Try to assess own actions and answers. Are there any questions that you have found too difficult? Did you complete all the questions? If you have any doubts, look up the answers in a textbook or some other materials of yours.
  • Think of future. It means that you are encouraged to take a minute for self-reflection and evaluate the experience of taking the exam. Decide what strategies worked and which ones did not. Think of a lesson that this exam taught you and how it can be used in the future.