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Teachers must shorten tests

Brianna Moore

Brianna Moore

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Everyone is familiar with the heavy-hearted  feeling of seeing the extensive question count on a test. Students hurry to pick up their pencil and blaze through the 150+ questions on the test, not bothering to review any answer since doing so could make a student late for next class. Nowadays, tests have transitioned from being an assessment of our knowledge to a race to the finish. Teachers need to shorten their tests to revert tests back to being assessments of student’s knowledge. In Journalism, I am learning that the longer articles aren’t always the best articles. Maybe teachers should see that the longer tests aren’t the most effective tests.

Every teacher needs to allow students to do an equal amount of work for each class instead of prioritizing one class over the other. They must do so by shortening their tests so students can make it to their next class, or lunch. Students have seven or more classes to attend to, and missing even five minutes of the next class can be detrimental to students’ grades since students get behind in their workload.  

I can personally attest to this. I have taken a biology test that was so long that I missed the first fifteen minutes of English, causing me to miss the instructions for our final project. This put me behind everyone else in my English class since I was learning the instructions while everyone else got to work on the project. Teachers need to make sure that their tests are able to be finished in the time allotted so students do not miss even five minutes of their next class, because it was a pain for me to be behind of everyone else.

Additionally, many of my friends and I can confirm that we have taken tests that have eaten away at our lunch time. My friends once came to lunch at the very end since they were finishing a test. They then had to gobble down their lunch in five minutes or less. Tests should not reduce student’s time to fulfill the human necessity of eating. That’s just unfair! Teachers always say that we need to prioritize our health, so they should let us execute this by shortening their tests so that we can make it to our lunch periods on time.

As we can see,  several students participate in after school activities. However, extensive tests can reduce our time of participating in these activities!  I have friends who had to cut time from sports such as lacrosse to finish tests. After finishing the test, they had to complete the rigorous warm-up all by themselves while the rest of the team practiced for the upcoming game. That’s unfair! Students should not have to sacrifice time from their interests to finish tests! And I know that school comes first, but students need to be, what teachers call, “well-rounded” and take breaks from school just like teachers!

Ac. Lab is a time where we are able to receive help from classes, but finishing extensive tests takes away from this ideal.  I have taken a Chemistry test  that was  so long that it extended  into ACT of ac. Lab time! I could not go to the classes I planned to receive help from, causing me to be even more confused the next class! I also missed the staff picture for my first newspaper issue, and I was not happy about that!  Teachers need to see that, just like them, students have things to do outside of their class. We  do have more than one class to attend to, you know. One class should not be more important than the other. If teachers continue to believe that their class is the  most important, then students will fail the other 7+ classes that we have because we will be spending all of our precious time on one class.  Teachers need to shorten their tests so we can attend to our other classes as well!

Many teachers, especially teachers of honors classes, expect and require their students to complete the 150+ question test by the end of the block. 150+ questions by the end of the block?! How fast do teachers think that we can write?! Some students who do not care very much about the test may be able to accomplish this. However, students like me who uphold the habit of thoroughly reading and reviewing  problems to make sure that we did not make any silly mistakes tend to struggle with finishing the test on time.

I am also a slow test taker no matter how much I prepare for the test, so teachers need to factor in student’s test taking abilities when creating tests. For students like me, the test becomes more of a race to the finish. We become more concerned about the quantity of the questions that we have answered rather than the quality of our answers.  The time crunch clouds my ability to illustrate all my knowledge on the test.  At the end of the block, we turn the test in, praying for simply a passing grade. This is unrighteous!

The test is not an accurate representation of our knowledge whatsoever; it is an accurate representation of the number of questions we can rush to answer in the time allotted! By the way, we do study extensively for these tests! It’s just RIDICULOUS  that teachers expect these students, who teachers know have studied and know the material, to finish the test AND have their test result reflect their knowledge!  Tests need to revert back to being accurate representations of our knowledge by having teachers shorten tests.

Many teachers give lengthy  tests that ask the same types of questions over and over again. Students understand the concept by now and do not need to answer the same type of question over and over again. Teachers need to shorten tests by having a variety of  test questions that cover the entire unit, not just repeated parts of the unit. We do not need to have 50 questions asking the same thing to showcase our knowledge!

I understand that many teachers would say that students are able to finish the test. However, students aren’t able to perform to the best of their ability on the test due to the time crunch. As stated before, tests should be an assessment of one’s knowledge, not a race to see who can answer the most questions in the time allotted. Not every student takes tests the same way, so test formats must be created by taking the students’ test taking methods into consideration. I am also aware that teachers are trying to prepare us for college exams, but many of the people that I have talked to say that college tests do not take longer than 90 minutes– the length of a block. Therefore, teachers, you all must shorten tests by including a condensed variety of questions so that tests become an accurate representation of students’ knowledge and not be a burden to student life outside of that class. I hope you consider these factors when creating your next test.

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Teachers must shorten tests