Underclassmen should have final exemptions
May 22, 2012 • Maggie Monson, Bear Facts Contributor
Filed under Viewpoint
One of the best parts of senior year for many students is the possibility of being exempt from final exams. In order to increase school-wide motivation, underclassmen should receive this privilege as well to increase student drive and motivation.
All students should be exempt from their finals in their last year of school in order to help them maintain desirable grades, and a good work ethic throughout the year. Allowing underclassmen exemptions would help boost participation in class. Students might put forth extra effort in a class to receive an A and therefore learn more. All students would be more inclined to complete homework and even come in for additional help if an exemption was possible.
“I would definitely try harder…Next year, when I can get exemptions, I am going to try my hardest to get A’s in all of my classes because I feel like not having to take the final is a really good reward for a good grade,” Erika Smolyar, junior, said. “It would motivate me to get that good grade. Sometimes when I do get a B, I say it’s fine because I can raise it with my final. I feel like I’m not as motivated in a class where I know I have to take the final. [If I could be exempt], I would study harder, procrastinate less, and work harder to get that A.”
As seniors choose colleges and prepare to move on from high school, their current classes can seem less important as they look towards the future. Allowing seniors to be exempt from their finals with a quarter grade of an A helps hold seniors accountable to their classes and grades.
Students will continue to turn in their homework and study for tests in order to avoid taking finals. This is a fitting reward for hard work during a student’s final semesters. This system works well to increase senior participation, so administration should extend this reward to underclassmen as well.
Underclassmen occasionally need extra encouragement to do homework for a class they do not like or find difficult. Any motivation the administration can give to them will be beneficial. Receiving an A is not as important to some students if they do not see the point in truly learning the information. By rewarding hard work and effort with not having to take the final, the administration would be ensuring more participation in class.
If underclassmen are to receive finals exemptions, however, the quality of learning in the classroom must be closely monitored. It is important that receiving an A in a class continues to mean the students learn the material presented and do the work, to earn the grade. If teachers attempt to boost students’ grades just for the sake of not grading finals, the student might not be learning as much as he or she should be.
With the proper precautions in place for a quality education, finals exemptions for all high school students would be a good way to increase student participation in class. Seniors should not be the only ones to receive this reward for hard work in a class.