Why Final Exams Shouldn't Exist
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Student Life

Why Final Exams Shouldn't Exist

Is their only purpose to cause unnecessary stress and existential crises?

Why Final Exams Shouldn't Exist
Aaron Burden

1. They're not an accurate measure of intelligence

It seems absurd to ask students to cram information into their brains for this one purpose. For most people, a least a little bit of test anxiety is existent. This means that whenever you take a test, your brain goes blank or is clouded with so much worry that you cannot focus properly and thus, get a horrible score on the test. A student could be endlessly talented in a subject but no one would ever know that just because of a score on a test.

2. They cause way too much stress in the lives of students and faculty

Not only do final exams cause stress in students, but also faculty. Worrying about covering all of the required material and having to grade all of these exams is exhausting. Not to mention, our society romanticizes the exhausted college student. If you're not dying from exhaustion and having heart palpitations from the amount of caffeine you've consumed, you're not working hard enough. Students should be able to choose their mental health over their education and not feel guilty about it ever.

3. In the real world, we have constant access to the information we're being tested on

Unless you're working in a third world country (which major props to you if you are), you have constant access to the resources you need. There's no need to memorize certain things that are useless to what you're going to be doing within your career. If I'm working in business analytics, I'm going to have constant access to Microsoft Excel, so why can't I use it now?

4. Motivation in students that are doing well vs. students that aren't doing so well

If a student is doing particularly well in a course, chances are they're going to be more motivated to do well on the final exam. On the contrary, if a student isn't doing well, they're more likely to bomb the final because they don't believe it can save their grade. Even though it sometimes can save their grade, a student is more likely to just give up because of this pre-existing idea of failure in their head.

5. Genuine learning vs. teaching for the sake of the exam

For every course, there is a very clear cut timeline (A.K.A. syllabus) as to what is to be taught and by when. Which makes sense because without some kind of direction, it would be difficult to cover what is needed. But when a professor is struggling to cover all of the intended curriculum and starts shoving busy work down their students' throats, it becomes a problem. I don't want to do work that is predetermined to mean absolutely nothing to my personal growth and development.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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