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Preparing for Oral Exams

Updated on February 13, 2016

Oral Exams

ORAL TEST TAKING. Oral exams form a part of some of the tests that you will take while you are in high school and if you plan to attend college. The oral exam will test your ability to present information effectively.

Oral exams tend to follow two forms. You will have the formal type and the other type which is informal. Formal exams usually consists of a number of questions that will be in the form of a true/false format. Informal exams on the other hand are more of the subjective type. Here you have the opportunity to expand on your answers. Analysis and evaluation skills play an important part in the way you will be assessed for this type of exam. Also be aware that you will be marked not only for the way you presented the information but how you respond to questions posed by your teacher and the audience.

As you prepare to take your oral exams there are some strategies that you will need to adopt if you want to master this art. First and foremost, be sure you arrive at your exam center in a timely manner. Make a list of questions that apply to the material you are presenting. As you do so prepare the answers that you would give for each. You might also rehearse with one or a couple of your classmates who has a good deal of knowledge of the material.You could tell them to ask some practice questions that would apply to the oral exam. You might also ask them to tell you what other information was left out after completing the exercise.

 Another exercise that would be very helpful is to rehearse by practicing the presentation and recording it using a video. When you do this, please pay attention not only to the verbal presentation but to your body posture. Be aware that keeping eye contact, maintaining an upright shoulder and head position play an important part in the way the presentation will turn out. 

If you plan to use electronic equipment for your presentation, please check to see it is in good working order. It is particularly important that you carry out this check not only the day before, but also a couple of hours before the exam. In doing so you will be better able to make adjustments if the equipment doesn’t function. 

If the oral exam requires a specific type of dress code follow suit. If not, you may find that you may be penalized. As to the extent that this lack of obedience will affect your grade, lies in the hand of the teacher. Take the time out to give a clear explanation to questions that may be posed as you present. This will go a long way in determining the understanding you have of the material that is presented. 

Always pay close attention to the time limit that is given to complete your presentation. Failing to adhere to this instruction could lead to a reduction in your grade.

Never forget to express thanks to your teacher after completing your oral exams.


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