Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Me and the ACT

It's been awhile since I've made the time to update my blog. Wow, has it really been since September?? Anatomy and Physiology I pretty much took over my life this past semester. But, I got a B, so I'm guessing it was worth it. My psychology class was pretty straightforward, so I got an A in it. Truthfully, I don't know how these working mothers go back to school anymore. Yes, it's true, I did this back in 1997 as a single-parent of two, but even that's a major blur. I remember being exhausted all the time. These days, it's not necessarily a problem working and going to school as much as it is the whole test anxiety thing. Apparently, I'm not the only one who suffers from this, but nonetheless, I'm fairly adept at beating myself up over it. Case in point: The ACT. In order to get into nursing school, (no matter which one), I knew I would have to retake the ACT. So, I ordered the study guide last January and started to go through it. Even that did not prepare me for the anxiety I felt as I walked in to take the test. I was grateful it was being held at my community college only 4.5 miles away, but it did disturb me that besides the proctor, (who was old as Methuselah....the oldest man recorded in the bible), I was the oldest person in the room. When I took the exam almost 37 years ago, I either didn't remember the long list of rules, or basically, we are in a whole new world. The old guy stood and read this verbatim from the test booklet:
"You will be dismissed and your answer document will not be scored if you are found:
* Filling in or altering ovals on a test or continuing to write the essay after time has been called on that test
* Looking back at a test on which time has already been called
* Looking ahead in the test booklet
* Looking at another examinee's test booklet or answer document
* Giving or receiving assistance
* Using a prohibited calculator
* Using a calculator on any test other than the Mathematics Test (Why would anyone do that?? What in the world could they use it for?)
* Sharing a calculator with another examinee
* Using any device to share or exchange information at any time during the tests or during breaks (all electronic devices, including cell phones, must be turned off from the time you are admitted to test until you are dismissed after testing concludes)(And if you were caught using your phone on the break, you would be dismissed!)
* Attempting to remove test materials, including test questions or answers, from the test room by any means
* Using highlight pens, colored pens or pencils, scratch paper, notes, dictionaries, or other aids
* Not following instructions or abiding by the rules of the test center
* Exhibiting confrontational, threatening, or unruly behavior
* Creating a disturbance or allowing an alarm or phone to sound in the test room"
(Ironically, it was the Proctor whose phone went off during the exam!) 
I forgot to bring a wrist watch, and after that laundry list of do's and don't's , I was terrified even to look at the wall clock! As a result, I kept running out of time. I will be retaking the test as I was 5 points shy of the minimum to get into one nursing school, and only 2 points lacking to get into the other one.


Debra Spincic said...

Just consider that as your warm-up test! Then, go slay the next one.

Renee said...

Nice to see you post. Sorry to hear it's been rough. I just wanted to offer a word of encouragement though. A B is great. Good for you. I also see you're studying nursing and wanted to share that my dear daughter in law just started her first full time gig as a nurse less than 6 months out of school. She went for her RN straight out of high school and just graduated this past May. The income this child earns is unfathomable to me. lol. But she deserves every penny for her efforts and you will too when you are all done. And your family will also swell with pride for your hardwork and sacrifices. Keep on keeping on and I hope you and yours have a rockin' New Year.

emi said...

The Proctor's phone went off! :) That's rich! I think he should be dismissed for distracting you!