Conquering Test Anxiety

For Elementary and Middle School

Before Testing

Know the Test Format

AASA and AzSCI are computer-based tests. They include multiple choice, multiple select, interactive, and fill in the blank question types. Try out some of these question types by taking the practice test online (under mic check and sample tests).

Know the Test Tools

Tools are available to students based on the exam and grade level. All students will have access to text-to-speech on the AASA Math, AASA Writing, and AzSCI. Experience additional test tools by taking the practice tests online!

Mentally Prepare

Students academically prepare for testing all year in their classes, but it is important to also mentally prepare for the testing experience. Click the button above for resources to help your student navigate different emotional states.

Pack Accordingly

Since students are accustom to working in a specific setting on a daily basis, it is important to support students by sending them to testing prepared. While ASUPD will provide all testing materials, some students just like using their own stuff!


During testing, you may wish to send students with the following items:


  • Water bottle
  • Snacks
  • Sweater/Jacket
  • Pens/Pencils
  • Noise cancelling headphones
  • Fidget device (so long as it does not distract others)

During Testing

Have a Plan

Think through different testing situations before they happen. Think about what you might do if you come across a question you don't know how to do. Consider how you might narrow down options for challenging questions. Envision a timeline for your writing process.

These are all situations you will benefit from thinking through in advance so you can focus your mental energy on the test questions.

Break Things Up

Know that during the exam you will be able to use the restroom, take a quick stretch, or even give your eyes a break from the computer screen. Consider taking these breaks at set points during the test or as needed to prevent fatigue.

Practice Calming Techniques

Taking slow, deep breaths - Closing your eyes and counting to 10 - Positive self talk

These are just a few ways you might be able to keep yourself present and calm during the exam.

Accept When You Don't Know Something

On a big test like this, you actually aren't expected to know everything on it. If you think you know something but are unsure, skip it and come back to it later. If you know you don't know something, there is no harm in accepting that. Take a guess and move on to the next question.

Remember: This test does not define you!