Why Midterms Should Not Exist

The week of anxiety-ridden insanity stemming from seven soul-crushing tests- also known as midterm week for high school students- should not exist. 

  1. Midterms are about memorization

The school system is severely negligent as it promotes the belief that students can accurately display their intelligence on tests created by Lucifer himself. Teenagers are expected to memorize a semester’s worth of material and apply it- an unfathomable thought. This is not a measure of intelligence, but a measure of memorization and application of “test-taking skills,” known to students as guessing and overthinking. Students have unbelievable expectations to perform to their capacity, but how is that possible when one tries to dissect their knowledge from a week-long extravaganza?

  1. Students have different strengths and weaknesses

The system expects students to excel on midterms. Forcing all students to take the same test is like telling a monkey and an elephant: “For your test, you must climb that tree!” It is illogical to believe that one way of testing provides adequate data on a teenager’s intellect. Students’ brains often go blank during tests as their nerves set in and they struggle to focus, thus causing the student to receive a bad grade. The point of school is to help students succeed, so then why base their intelligence on a test that ultimately will hurt their self-esteem and grades? A student could have extensive knowledge in history, but due to poor test-taking skills, they will receive a low grade. 

  1. The health of students is disregarded

The school system should place the well being of students above grades. Midterms cause excessive stress that often leads to anxiety and depression, as well as developing coping mechanisms such as pulling out hair, biting nails, eating too little or too much, and grinding teeth. Students stay up studying for midterms and often find themselves needing energy drinks or coffee. These highly addictive beverages enforce poor sleeping habits. If a student consumes an energy drink in the wee hours of the morning, their heart will beat rapidly during their morning midterm from the anxiety produced by the stimulant. Teenagers isolate themselves due to long hours of studying.

  1. Does not prepare for adulthood

In the “real world,” the internet and other media eliminate the need to memorize information. The school system should be teaching students how to access and find reputable data and evolve with the world. Having students remain in the same system of memorization is detrimental to their health. It is not preparing students for the workforce. 

Students should not be expected to cram worthless information into their brains for one dreadful week.