Skip to main navigationSkip to main content
The University of Southampton
Student Disability & WellbeingPart of Student Services

Wellbeing tips for after an assessment

Feelings of stress may continue following an assessment. This could be because it is taking time to overcome the fight or flight response, or it could be a reaction to thoughts you are having about the assessment, how you have performed, and what your results will be like. Here are some tips to help you manage post-assessment stress:

Acknowledge and celebrate your achievements 

Don't wait until results to give yourself a pat on the back - you have completed the assessment! Reflect on all the achievements that have got you here, big and small. Remind yourself that you have now done everything you can do for that assessment and worrying about how you have done won't change anything. 

Try not to compare

Whilst you may want to discuss answers with your friends after the assessment for reassurance, often it has the opposite effect and you may end up doubting what you have written. It's ok to politely tell your friends that you would rather not discuss the assessment.

Balance your thoughts

If you are struggling to keep things in perspective, you might be experiencing unhelpful thinking habits. One example is catastrophising, or thinking of the worst case scenario: "I feel like that assessment went badly. I'm going to fail that module and fail the course". It can be helpful to label the thought and try to dispute it. You could think of evidence against the thought such as assessments that you've succeeded in before or stressful situations you've coped with before. You could also evaluate whether you are being too hard on yourself - if a friend said they felt the assessment went badly, wat would you say to them? Try Togetherall's course called Balance Your Thinking for more support with this.

Keep it in perspective

Assessments do not define you as a person; you have lots of positive qualities that aren't related your grades, or even your studies as a whole. It may help to write down these qualities so that you can see them in front of you. Whilst your University course may be relevant to a future career, employers will also take into account extracurricular achievements, your attitude and enthusiasm, your people skills and transferrable skills. You can read more about tackling the over-valuation of achieving in the Useful Downloads section below.

Clear your materials away

Tidying away your study materials will remove the physical reminders of your finished assessments can help to clear your mind of thoughts about the assessments. Keep the notes you might need and recycle the rest or tidy them away in a 'revision' folder on your computer.

Do something different

It's likely you've spent a large amount of time focussing on assessments recently - studying, thinking about assessments, talking about the assessments. Do something you enjoy doing - something creative, something active, or even catching up on some TV for a while can help with our stress levels. If you need some ideas, take a look at the Self-Care Starter Kit in the Useful Downloads section below.

If something didn't go to plan

If you experience problems during the assessment, please make the Student Office aware of this. They can provide you with information relating to your studies and discuss applying for Special Considerations where appropriate.

Useful Downloads

Need the software?PDF Reader
Privacy Settings