Finals should have been before winter break


Connor Rahil

Students studied hard for first semester finals this week. Perhaps they would have been better off if these finals had been before break.

Connor Rahill, Staff Writer

The most stressful time of a student’s educational career is finals week. Students are pressured to recollect and memorize everything they have learned over the past four and a half months for multiple different classes. On the flip side, winter break is one of the most calming times for a student. Students take advantage of the hiatus to relax, unwind, and forget all our stresses of school.

When students return to school at the end of break, they’re forced to pick the cobwebs off their brain cells and quickly boot up their productivity mindset in time for first semester’s finals. This instantaneous transition from “vacation mode” to “hardcore study mode” can’t be good for students’ mental health. We need our first week back to school to progressively ease back into schoolwork and studying. If first semester ended before winter break, students would be able to better enjoy their time off from school and finally relax after taking their stressful finals.

Some students prefer to start studying weeks in advance of finals. Because finals take place almost immediately after winter break’s end, this means that these students would need to spend their precious vacation time by studying quizlets and reviewing a semester’s worth of information. While this provides more time for students to study for finals, we can all agree that nobody wants to waste away their vacation with schoolwork.

Having a two-week resting period void of all schoolwork completely resets the momentum of the semester right before finals.

— Connor Rahill

An overwhelming majority of BSM students agree with this sentiment. Nearly 85% of students would rather take the first semester’s finals before winter break as opposed to the current schedule. Of course, a large scale schedule change like this is easier said than done. Accounting for this change, BSM would likely have to start school in mid-August and end in late May. However, I think that most students would be okay with starting school a couple of weeks earlier if that’s what it takes to have finals before break.

Another problem is that many students forget nearly everything they learned before break. Having a two-week resting period void of all schoolwork completely resets the momentum of the semester right before finals. I always have to relearn mathematical formulas and remind myself of forgotten rhetorical analyses that slipped from my memory during Christmas’s intermission. If finals took place before break, students would remember more information and be less stressed while studying. Additionally, it would be great to have a long winter break in between first and second semester. Second semester always starts up slow, which would better accommodate students progressively transferring their brains back into thinking mode after vacation.