Exams are tough, no matter how prepared and confident you are. They’re one of the most classic anxiety-inducing scenarios in any culture. So if you’re worried that you’re the only person worried about passing the home inspector exam, don’t. You’re in good company.
But you can help reduce your test-taking anxiety and perhaps perform better on the exam with a little preparation. Here are 10 ways that you can make a positive difference on test day:
#1: Familiarize Yourself with the Particulars of the Test
Nothing can stress you out quite as quickly as a brand new situation. But if you familiarize yourself with how the test is laid out, you’ll be in for fewer surprises and have fewer reasons to fall prey to anxiety. Use a study guide to learn what kinds of questions will be asked, how much time you’ll have to take the exam, and other particulars.
#2: Start Studying a Few Weeks Early
Preparation is critical for any exam. That why the Home Inspector Secrets Study Guide recommends studying about 3-4 weeks before test day. If you give yourself plenty of time, you won’t be as apt to feel like you’re racing against the clock.
#3: Take a Practice Exam
Studying is important, but test performance can be a little different. It’s getting that knowledge out of your brain and onto the answer sheet that’s sometimes tricky. Take a practice exam, and you’ll get a feel for the testing methods.
#4: Don’t Cram the Night Before the Exam
Cramming before a big test is an age-old technique used by panicked students around the world. But it’s not really healthy, and research shows that it doesn’t really work, either. The Temporal Dynamics of Learning Center explains that the only cramming that really helps is a note review 10 or fewer minutes before the exam. Longer than that, and most of the information is lost.
#5: Eat a Good Breakfast on Exam Day
Unless you’re truly one of those people who can’t stomach breakfast and you’ve got an early exam time, eat a healthy breakfast before you head to the testing center. It will help you stay more alert, and it will also help prevent embarrassing stomach growls in a quiet room full of people. Campus Explorer also recommends skipping sugary foods that can wear off quickly.
#6: Dress Comfortably
The last thing you want on your mind while taking your home inspector exam is a tag that scratches or jeans that don’t fit right. Minimize distractions by wearing clothes that you know are comfortable. That way, you can focus on the test instead of wishing you hadn’t worn those new boots that aren’t broken in yet.
#7: Confirm the Testing Center Location
Testing times can be firm, and late arrivals might be turned away. Unless you’re already 100 percent positive about the location of the testing center and how to get there, do a little research to be sure. Don’t forget about parking.
#8: Bring Everything You’ll Need
You should be advised of everything that you’ll need on test day when you register. Review the list to be sure you haven’t forgotten anything. Above all else, you’ll need 2 forms of ID.
#9: Read All of the Exam Instructions Before Answering Questions
When you’re anxious, you might be tempted to get ahead of yourself and answer a question that you think you understand. But do yourself a favor. Read the instructions for each question before you begin. That can save you a lot of stress in the long run.
#10: Review Your Work Before Submitting
You’ll probably think on each answer at least somewhat before moving on to the next question, even the ones you’re sure that you know. But before you complete your exam, go back to the beginning and review all of your answers again.
Exams are notoriously anxiety laden. Your home inspector exam carries a lot of weight, so it’s no different from any other exam you’ve ever taken in that respect. But if you go into the situation prepared, you’ll stand a much better chance of performing well.
If you’re not ready for your exam and only just thinking about enrolling in ICA School’s home inspection course, there’s no better way to find out what it’s like than to get a free demo. You’ll see firsthand what our training is like. And after you complete your course, you’ll be ready for a stress-inducing home inspector exam of your own.