Terça-feira, 21/5/2019 | : : UTC-4
The Reflection

Changes to exam format would benefit students

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As the trimester comes to an end, students begin to stress about their upcoming exams. At Gull Lake and many other schools, exams account for 20 percent of the total grade for high school students. They cover the content from the entire trimester.

“It’s so hard to remember things from three months ago. Remembering the older stuff is what makes exams so challenging,” senior Travis Ambrosio said.

Many students feel that exams are an unfair assessment of knowledge and that they account for too much of their grade. Exams are over content from the entire course, which tests students’ memories, not necessarily their level of understanding and comprehension. The problem with this that students do not get a pause in their classes to go back and review older content. They have to find their own time to do this. This means that students are required to continue learning new information while they review information from the past three months.


Exams increase stress levels for many students. Busy students struggle to find time within their schedules to study for the exams that are 20 percent of their grades. Photo by Stosh Tustin.

“I hate exams. They are super stressful and I feel like it’s hard to study when I already have so much going on,” senior Maddie Fouts said.

Students receive multiple tests continuously throughout their classes, which is a more fair assessment of knowledge. Exams test memory, not knowledge. One thing that could be done in place of exams, are essays. An essay would give students time to review their information and show a deeper understanding of content, versus taking a multiple choice test that doesn’t show full comprehension.

Exams count for a large percentage of overall grade. This makes it hard for students to increase their grade by doing well on an exam, but easy to decrease their grade by not doing well. This is setting students up for lower grades, despite them working hard to maintain their grades for three months.

Students that are balancing their school work, jobs, and sports have to work to put the extra studying into their schedules. Exams require extra study time that can be tricky to fit into an already busy schedule.

Additionally, high school students have so many classes that they have to study for. At Gull Lake, most students have five classes. Having more than one exam a day means that students have to study for two exams in one evening, creating additional stress.

“Having five exams is really a lot. The worst is when I have my two hardest exams on the same day,” Maddie Fouts said.

There are better ways to test students knowledge than lengthy exams. Exams should either be completely gotten rid of or they should account for a smaller percentage of the grade. They set students up for failure rather than success, which is a problem in our education system.


My name is Maiya Wimbley and this is my first year in Newspaper. I am interested in writing news and review articles.


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