Exams take toll on anxious students

After what seems like an eternity of memorizing numerous facts and vocabulary words, it is finally time to sit down and wait patiently for the professor to pass out the exam. Inevitably, the brain begins to cloud with feelings of insecurity and doubt. Even with the many hours spent studying, what lies ahead is still unknown.

This was the seventh week of classes at BGSU and students watched as their workload began to pile up. From midterm exams to midterm papers, students were feeling the pressure all around campus.

A recent study has shown that freshman midterm grades at Kent State University directly influences whether or not students will remain at the university. It has been found that first fall midterm GPA is what drives the retention rates.

Sandra Zirkes, a professor in the math and statistics department at BGSU, believes students should have the chance throughout the entire year to prove themselves.

“I like for grades to be based on more than testing,” she said. “Mainly, to give the students a chance to earn credit as they learn and for the work that they do throughout the whole semester.”

With a completely different work load to handle, the transition from high school to college may not be a smooth one. Many students feel that if their freshman midterms determined their retention at BGSU, the transition would become even more difficult.

“I would be extremely worried that my whole academic career could be jeopardized so early,” said Joe Jacobs, freshman. “Especially being a freshman, becoming assimilated within the campus community can be hard enough.”

At BGSU, the consensus seems to be that retention rates depend on the retention of information throughout the entire semester. With so many different ways a student can learn, grades seem to be based on participation and attendance as well.

“Not everyone is a good test taker,” said Zirkes. “So just giving a midterm and a final doesn’t necessarily tell what you have learned throughout the whole course.”

Craig Flack, a sophomore at BGSU has similar feelings.

“I don’t think I got any really good grades on my freshman midterm exams,” he said.