In-person vs. online finals: Which are better?

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The Catalyst / Ryan McGilchrist (Photo Courtesy of Flickr)

NDB has decided to hold all finals online for the 2021 spring exams.

As everyone nears the conclusion of the school year, students have begun to prepare for their spring finals. NDB has also recently announced that all finals taking place during finals week from June 1st to June 4th will be online via Zoom. Now that most NDB students have experienced both online and in-person finals, there is debate amongst the student body as to which model they prefer.

Both models have their benefits and disadvantages, leading students to prefer one or the other.

Taking one’s finals at school comes with many advantages, such as being in a physical classroom with a teacher and having a more focused setting. Being in a physical classroom with a teacher can benefit a student because the teachers can be of assistance to them if they have a question. At school, there are many fewer distractions than being at home where one could be disrupted by devices such as a phone. Being on campus provides a more professional and focused environment which can greatly benefit students, especially when taking finals.

With these benefits of taking finals in-person, there are disadvantages. For example, students have to wake up at an earlier time and risk possible exposure to COVID-19. Waking up early can prevent someone from having enough sleep, causing them to be stressed and unrested during the final. In addition, many are still attending classes online and may not feel safe coming back to campus.

Taking finals from home can have benefits such as being in a more comfortable setting, and getting to sleep in more before the tests. It’s more comfortable to be at home than at school, and one can wear clothes that are more comfortable than a school uniform. Students who are taking their finals from home are also more likely to be able to sleep in, which can help them to be more rested before their tests. Both of these factors could drastically improve one’s test scores as being comfortable, calm, and rested are important in order to perform well.

However, taking finals online does come with disadvantages, such as technical difficulties that could occur or distractions around the home that could disrupt a student taking their tests, such as phones, pets, or family members. If these distractions do occur, they could be very disruptive to a student who is trying to focus or maintain a peaceful environment. However, most distractions could be avoided by putting one’s phone away and by making sure all tech is running smoothly before taking the tests.

After having experiences taking finals online and in-person, we both prefer taking finals online. We felt less stressed taking our tests from home than at school, as a school environment tends to create a stressful testing space. Staying at home led us to be more rested and comfortable, and allowed both of us to have a serene testing experience and overall better test grades.

 

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