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How to Overcome Disappointment Over a Math Test

How to Overcome Disappointment Over a Math Test

The results are out; before you know it, you look at the mark on the test paper and cringe. Have you ever felt that way? If so, you are not alone. Many students experience the same feelings of disappointment and helplessness, especially if they didn’t do well on a math test.

The feelings can be numbing and overwhelming; nevertheless, we would like to explore a few coping mechanisms in this article. We will also see how to recoup, rebound and examine a few things you should and shouldn’t do. 

What You Shouldn’t Do

It is always disappointing to receive a grade you didn’t expect to get; it’s even worse when you fail. However, as a student, you will come to learn many lessons, and one of them is you shouldn’t let failure pull you down; instead, you should learn from it. 


Do not despair; being too hard on yourself will only worsen your feelings of disappointment. After all, a test isn’t an exam; there is still room for improvement. A bad grade doesn’t represent your overall final grade, but it might only affect it. Instead of punishing yourself, think of areas you could improve by looking at the questions you made mistakes in and correcting them.  


Do not blame yourself or others. A lot of students can internalize their failure by saying, “I will never get this,” or “I am definitely not a math person.” Such thoughts are detrimental to your self-esteem; they do not promote resilience. Try thinking differently, tell yourself, “I can do this,” math isn’t rocket science; it is about breaking down and practicing formulas and equations. 


At times it might be easy to blame others as well, especially your teacher, by saying, “he didn’t tell us that was going to be on the test.” Blaming others removes the willpower from yourself to rectify the problem and gives away your power to someone else.

What You Should Do

After receiving a disappointing grade, you should begin to think objectively. We have already discussed what you shouldn’t do; now let us look at a few steps you should take. Ask yourself what went wrong. Instead of shifting the blame, try figuring out why you didn’t do well. Did you not study long enough? Did you not know what was going to be covered on the test? Simply posing these questions will help you take proactive steps. 

Reflecting on your study habits will also give you a fair and honest assessment of your capabilities. Take time to think about how much you prepared for the test, if you procrastinated, this could have contributed to the bad grade. 


The proactive steps you can take include asking your teacher for a list of topics to study. Write down the next test date on your planner to remind you to study. More importantly, it would greatly help if you asked for feedback from your teacher. 


Your teacher knows your math strengths and weaknesses better than anyone. Instead of asking why you didn’t get a better grade, you could ask him what you can do to improve next time. How can you restructure your answers to help you get a better grade? These questions are conducive to your educational success. 

What Can You Do To Improve?

Setting goals is imperative to your future success plan. Once you have recognized the areas you need to improve on, you can now seat realistic goals and achieve them. What are some of the goals you could set? There are many; primarily, you need to plan a study schedule and stick to it. Follow your schedule regularly and plan your time accordingly. Plan out plenty of time to complete assignments, scheduling at least two hours daily to study math. 


Eliminate surrounding distractions and prioritize assignments that need to be completed first. Practice problem solving, write down formulas, summarize key points in each chapter, and go over them. 

You can also seek extra credit points in assignments to compensate for your bad grade. At times your teacher might be interested in knowing if you are willing to put the time and effort to make up for the grade. If you are willing to improve your grade by completing extra credit assignments, that won’t change your grade but will let your teacher know that you want to do your best.


To get better at math, it is beneficial to look at the online math learning resources that you could potentially use. The internet has various online math learning resources that could help you study. Math planet, for example, helps students practice math thanks to its high-level math school courses in Algebra 1, Algebra 2, and Pre-algebra and Geometry. Most of the math courses cater to US high school math curriculums and are free of charge. 


Another helpful resource is the Khan Academy; it provides students with customized lessons helping them improve their understanding of math. The website includes practice math exercises, supplementary educational materials for teachers, and more than 8,000 instructional math video lessons. All resources are free to users of their official website and application. 


OMC Helps Students Excel in Math

Reconstructing your study habits to achieve better goals and improve your math grades is imperative. The Online Math Center tutors know that a bad grade doesn’t define who you are, but how you move on can define you. That’s why our tutors walk you through the process of learning math and help you understand confusing parts in a fun and creative way. Getting better grades has never been easier, contact us now to learn more or schedule a consultation; we will be happy to assist you!

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