Do finals get the final say?


Students spend multiple hours studying for finals during the last days of class.

For a high school student, Spring is considered to be the best and worst time of the year. With the school year winding down, and summer just around the corner, it’s easy to become excited thinking about the long days with little responsibility. However, daydreams of summer come to a halt when teachers say that little six letter word that pulls us right back to reality: finals.


Final exams are an easy way for teachers to give an end-of-the-year test and see how much students have learned and retained in their class. Finals can be very effective from a teaching standpoint, but what about for the students? Is a huge test during the last week of school really the best way to test student’s knowledge?


As a hardworking student who takes school seriously, I don’t think one test should have enough weight and hold enough importance to determine a final grade in a class. If you’ve worked hard all year, and done well on previous tests, I don’t think a final should be able to make or break your grade. Especially when the final is assigned the last week of school, I don’t see how that is setting anyone up for success.


In classes with intensive workloads, such as AP classes,  I don’t see the point in taking a final, when the whole objective of the class is to pass a standardized test. For students that dedicate hours to studying for AP tests, studying the same material again for a final seems a little redundant and unnecessary.


For some classes, having some sort of final is needed to wrap up the year. Some different types of finals that students seem to enjoy more than a scantron multiple test exam include presentations, group work, labs, and even essays. Sometimes mixing it up a little bit can make the workload a little more interesting and can keep students focused and motivated all the way through the last bell.


I’m not saying that getting rid of finals will solve all the problems of high school because it won’t. And finals are important, I know that. I just think that changing the way finals are approached by teachers and perceived by students could relieve some bitter feelings about finals, and could lead to a happier end of the year for all of us.