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As someone who has had to take an insane number of exams in the past six months, you would think I would be unable to function at this point. Exams, tests, essays have taken over my life. I am drained to the point where my functioning is comparable to that of a mindless robot. Strangely enough, four months from now, I know when I look back at this time period I will have a weird sense of fondness.
The only way to make sense of this belief is by taking the example of exercise. It’s a scientific fact that 90 per cent of people dislike going to the gym and would much rather lie on a couch with a jumbo pack of Doritos (cheese flavoured of course). Let’s face it, we’re pigs. Then when the time of day comes to burn off those cheesy calories, we physically drag ourselves to the gym and manage to soldier through a gruelling workout. By the time we’re done… we feel good but how is that possible? We went from hating every second on the treadmill to feeling satisfied… hard work is overall a weird phenomenon.
Now exams and I have a love-hate relationship. Just like the after effects of going to the gym, I relish the satisfaction of doing well in an exam. Don’t get me wrong, the majority of my days are spent wishing time would fast forward to when I’m retired and work-free. Till then, all I can do is play the game.
A wandering thought – what would this column look like if I got one of my teachers to write it? Would they agree that exams are the devil’s child? Or would they begin to sing praise of the many benefits of taking exams?
From a purely ‘purpose’ perspective, exams are extremely reductionist. A person’s entire knowledge and intelligence is being based upon their answers to a couple of multiple choice questions. It isn’t the fairest practice. Then again, my tone might change if I end up getting a high mark on the exam I just took last week. Oops.