You studied so hard, you know the material, but still…. you fail the GED® test.
Well, though this may sound a bit strange, studying hard does not automatically mean that you’ll be successful on the actual test! In fact, studying hard is only just one part of getting all set for any exam.
The real key to attain a successful score on a test is studying effectively! And if you’ve studied very hard but still don’t get sufficient grades, it’ll probably be that part that you’re missing.
So studying harder isn’t the solution. It’s all about studying more smartly, more effectively, but where and how should you learn to do that?
Well, your first step should be determining what your actual problem is and how you should address it.
6 common reasons why students get bad scores despite studying hard
Reason #1: Test Anxiety
The problem is that when you’re feeling extremely nervous when taking a test, your mind may go blank and you’re suffering from severe test anxiety.
Consequently, you won’t be able to remember the topics you’ve studied so hard for, and you can’t concentrate on simply answering the test questions at hand.
Our Tip: When you studied hard and master the material, you really should try to calm down and relax once test day has arrived.
Think in a positive way like “I studied hard for this and I know all the material”, and you may also want to practice taking some deep breaths when you sitting for the test.
Reason #2: You Don’t Use The Right Learning Style
The problem is that many students don’t use a learning style that matches the way they learn. Auditory learners, for example, study best if they listen to the material, not when they write notes.
Our Tip: Learn all about your specific learning style. You should try out a number of learning styles to discover the one that works best for you. The main learning styles are:
- Auditory Style: this way, students read their notes aloud while reviewing the study material
- Visual Style: this way, students learn best by visualizing the study material like learning from videos
- Kinesthetic Style: this is a more hands-on learning style for students that learn best with study activities like making their own study notes. You can take a learning style quiz here.
Reason #3: Randomly Guessing
The problem is that you’re simply guessing on a test and don’t have an appropriate strategy.
Our Tip: You should learn how to eliminate the wrong answer options in a strategic way and there are numerous techniques to do so. One of our favorite techniques is the “Divide & Conquer” method.
Reason #4: Late And All Night Study Sessions
The problem is that you’re pulling late-night or all-night cram study sessions instead of learning little bits each day before taking a test.
Our Tip: When you’re sleeping, the material you learned will be moved from your short-term memory to your long-term memory. So enjoying a good night’s sleep ahead of taking a test is definitely more effective than studying late at night or all night long. You should plan your studying way ahead and begin to learn days in advance. You really should avoid last-minute and late-night or all-night studying.
Reason #5: Taking No Breaks
The problem is that you’re studying for long hours without taking any breaks. But when you spend more time and long hours studying, that won’t mean you’ll understand the study material better!
Our Tip: Rather than learning in longer time blocks, you should learn by using the so-called spacing study technique, meaning you should study for a set amount of time and then have a break before starting a new session. This is also called the Pomodoro study technique. By doing this, your brain will absorb the study material more effectively and retain it better as well.
Reason #6: You Don’t Have A Study Plan
The problem is that if you don’t have a good study plan to go by during your learning sessions, you won’t be able to determine what you should focus on when you’re learning for your exam. Some great help is also offered through Alexa and Amazon Echo to get all set for the GED exam. Learn more here.
Our Tip: For each of your learning sessions, set your goals. Know what you are looking to accomplish. If you study this way, you can better keep track of what you’ve achieved and which areas still need your attention.
7 test-taking Strategies
When you have studied so hard but are missing just a few points on the GED test, you may want to revise your study techniques. Let’s take a closer look at seven important strategies that will help you make it through the four independent GED exams:
What Can Help
- Prepare well. One of the main reasons for test anxiety is really knowing the study material. When you follow a GED prep course and study regularly, this stress caused should be reduced or even eliminated! What’s also important is getting familiar with the GED calculator. If you know how to use it well, you will definitely boost your GED Math score.
- Practice and practice again! Taking multiple GED practice tests is among the best techniques to get all set for any exam, so also for the GED exam! When you take practice tests, it’s like taking the exam in a test-like setting and your test-taking anxiety will reduce considerably. Create your study room and practice staying relaxed, calm, and confident. In case you’ll get overly anxious again, simply pause for a short while and start over again.
- Avoid negative feelings and thoughts. Try to eliminate negative thoughts. If you think like “My God, I’ll never make it through this test” or “I’ve got to be so stupid; I really don’t get this!” you can easily get into a negative spiraling stress cycle. And this in itself may cause enough test anxiety already to block your efforts even further. When you’re feeling you’re getting into these sorts of negative thoughts, stop your activities and refresh your mind. It’s just no good to practice when you feel anxious! What might help is allowing yourself to dream away a little and visualizing yourself in a pleasant setting, surrounded by good friends.
- Don’t start again until you’re sure the tension has gone. There will be times that taking a deep breath or shouting to yourself “STOP!” really helps. Then, you can resume your activities again with a clear mind. When you’ve cleared your mind, reassure yourself by telling yourself something like “I know all of this stuff” prior to continuing your study efforts.
- Visualize your success. Just picture yourself feeling like what it would be to get an A. Then, translate that great vision into reasonable, specific study goals and work toward accomplishing those individual goals. Don’t try to take more steps at a time and upon accomplishing one goal, treat yourself with a little reward each time you’ve completed a goal.
- It’s only about you and yourself! It’s useless to waste time comparing your study results to those of other students. Just stay focused on your own studying, your own work, and create your study plan and stick to that.
- Make a study plan and stick to it. When you’re ready to go the GED path, develop your own study plan and stick to it. Don’t procrastinate things and don’t wait until the last minute. That will only cause more pressure and test anxiety. Don’t forget, as said earlier, that late-night studying will lead to more anxiety and that you won’t retain much of what you’ve learned.
Keep in mind that the four GED exams can be pretty difficult and that you should become optimally prepared. Knowing not only What-to-Study but especially How-to-Study will definitely make all the difference between passing or failing the GED exam!
Many GED students have experienced serious difficulties to pass the four GED exams. Often, the difference between successful test takers and unsuccessful test-takers is their approach to learning and their study habits.
Good test-takers are efficient learners. They will focus on those areas that they’re weak at and test anxiety plays an important role. So use the above-listed Test-Taking Tips and Strategies to reach high scores on the GED exam!
Last Updated on August 23, 2021.