You hand in your paper. With your pencil still in hand you walk out of the classroom. Your head is spinning and your brain is foggy. What just happened? You've been scribbling and calculating for the past hour and a half and now, suddenly, you can’t remember a single word or number you just wrote. Questions left blank, unsolved answers, any hope for partial credit becomes simple chicken scratch -- and that’s when you realize, I think I just failed that test.
Although nine out of 10 times you didn’t actually do as badly as you thought, sometimes you do -- and I’m here to tell you that it’s not the end of the world. It may feel like the end of the world, right now, in this exact moment while you stare at the "57" drawn in red ink at the top of your page, but it’s not.
If you’ve just failed a test and are feeling incredibly distraught and discouraged, remember these five reasons why failing a test isn’t the end of the world.
1. You won't necessarily fail the class.
Whether it’s a test at the beginning of the semester or the end, one bad
test grade will usually not completely deter your final semester
grade. With other tests, homework, projects, and the final -- there are
sure to be plenty of other areas where you can bring your grade up. Talk
to your professor about your options. I guarantee that they are more
than willing to do whatever they can to help you and your grade.
2. This grade will not cost you your dream job.
Even if you do end up getting a lower grade in the class than you would have hoped or expected to, one class will not completely destroy your GPA, and even if it does lower it, GPA is usually only considered when applying for your first job. Even then, it is rarely held at a high importance. Your previous experience and recommendations from previous employers are usually more important than your GPA (depending on major and intended post-undergrad plans, such as grad-school).
3. Your life is great.
Education is a blessing, and so are your health, happiness, friends and
family. Remember all of the positive parts of your life. In retrospect,
this test grade will not affect your overall quality of life. Be
thankful for the health you have, your friends and family who love you,
the roof over your head, the education you have, etc. Your parents or grandparents probably failed a test in their lifetime and they turned okay, didn't they? Yes, and so will you.
4. This won't affect you a year from now.
Most likely, a year from now you will not even remember this test.
You will be taking different classes, focusing on different things, and
the grade on this test will become a distant memory. You will probably
even laugh at yourself for ever being so upset about something so
5. You'll learn a lesson.
This grade will give you the motivation to study a little bit harder, next time. It will also teach you that when you fail in life you just need to keep your head up and try again. Although in this case it’s a test, this experience will become a metaphor for other aspects of life. Some things simply require you to fail once or twice before you can fully succeed.