Writing to Reduce Test Anxiety
This is an interesting report on the effect of writing on test-anxiety.
In one study, a periodic writing assignment improved the scores of women in a college physics course. In another, writing before a math exam improved the scores of high school and college students. In this second study, the most anxious students showed the most improvement.
The nature of the writing exercises is also interesting. In the first study, students were prompted to write something “values-affirming” (i.e., positive) at the beginning of the semester, and again several weeks in. In the second study, students were asked to write immediately before the exam, and they were prompted to write specifically about their anxieties. In both cases, writing had a positive impact for a significant number of students.