the nicholls worth

Test scores don’t necessarily determine knowledge gained


As the middle of the semester is rapidly approaching, students are preparing for mid term exams and hoping for the A that will keep them from dropping the class, but exams and test results do not always determine the amount of knowledge we have gained.

The amount of time you spend studying will help you gain knowledge, no matter what the outcome is. Working hard in your classes will only help and not fail you. Getting a failing grade seems horrible, but how many times did a brilliant, successful student fail a test and still go on to do great things?

Albert Einstein dropped out of school at the age of 15 and then flunked the entrance exam for a polytechnic school in Zurich. When he finally passed the test, he still continued to struggle in school, but became one of the most admired theoretical physicists in the world of science.

To some, test taking is challenging and can cause test anxiety. There are times when you study for days and feel confident on what you have studied, but when you begin the test, everything you studied leaves your mind. You start second-guessing questions and over think. It is a domino effect. When your professor returns the test to you and reviews it, then you realize you knew the answer to the questions you got wrong.

Before we entered college, we had to take the ACT or SAT. That one score determined where you were going to college, but it does not say what kind of student you are and how much you know. Anyone could fail the test multiple times and keep taking it until they get their satisfactory score. All it says is a student refused to give up and had the knowledge they needed just by taking it.

We all want to succeed in the classroom, but that starts with professors and the way lecture. We are in a generation where technology is to our advantage and was always used for teaching in high school; most of our teachers used power points and other visual aids such as videos to help us understand what we were learning. Some professors use those visual aids in their lectures while others go for the old school lecture: their voice. Our generation is used to learning and retaining by visual lectures. Our capabilities do not change.

There are times when we do not have a concrete idea on what to study for the exam. However, we are fully responsible with the choice of studying or not. The amount of time between tests can be a month or two weeks apart. During that time, we are constantly trying to absorb what we are learning in each chapter. When it is time for the test it is overwhelming to study five chapters for one test. When that happens, professors won’t be happy with the inconsistency in test scores. Expressing concern about tests to professors will help you to improve on what you didn’t achieve before.

Test scores dictate whether we move to the next level or not, but we never leave a course without learning something. Skills may lack and studying is always the difference maker. No matter how many hours we study and then fail, we still have gained more than we knew before.

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The student newspaper of Nicholls State University
Test scores don’t necessarily determine knowledge gained