How do we feel about midterms before break?

December 28, 2018

Everyone looks forward to our holiday break. Two whole weeks of relaxation and plenty of time to spend with friends and family.

In years past, students haven’t been able to enjoy their break as exams are only a couple of weeks after and their free time is spent finishing assignments and studying.

However, for the 2018-2019 school year, students will be taking exams before holiday break.

While the overall outcome of the schedule change is fairly positive, there are still some issues with taking exams before break.

One of the benefits of completing exams before the break is that for most classes (sorry We The People), students will not have homework over the break because they will have already finished the semester by the time break begins.

Students also won’t have to stress out over studying for exams as we will already have taken them.

Taking exams before break will be great in the moment, but the effects of the schedule change may become bothersome later on in the year.

Even though school began in mid-to-late August, our first semester becomes much shorter than the second semester because of the early exams.

This means that teachers have to either cram the same amount of information that they normally give out during the first semester into a much smaller time frame or they have to teach more of their material in the second semester, which could make the end of the year exams a bit more challenging.

Normally when I take my midterms, I know that I’m halfway through the year and I feel a sense of relief after I finish all of my exams. Now that we are taking exams before break, I might feel relieved that I don’t have to study over break, but then I’ll remember that I’m not actually halfway through the year, I have two whole weeks extra for the second semester.

The positives of having midterms before break definitely outweigh the negatives, but it is important to realize that there are also a couple of cons to the schedule change as well.


I think exams should be after break. Most, if not all, students have very little motivation right now and are impatiently waiting for break. Personally, I’m just counting the days until break instead of focusing on what’s important: my grades and exams. Having exams after break is also better because it doesn’t mess up the school schedule. If we have exams before break, it adds two weeks onto the second semester. This means the final exams would be harder and longer, as we would be adding two weeks of information onto the exams. Exams before break also force students to jump into the new semester right away. Usually, we have a couple of extra weeks to save our grades before midterms but this year, we go straight into a new semester with new projects and homework right after break.

…or Nay?

I would rather have exams before break. Even though I didn’t love returning to school several weeks early, I think this is the better option for students because we can enter 2019 in the new semester with new information. We will not have to worry about remembering information over break for exams, we can enjoy break with no stress of upcoming exams. Getting it all out of the way before the end of the year allows us to have a fresh start in January. Also, I’m looking forward to not having any homework at all over break.

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