Exams vs End of the Year Projects


Teachers from all subject areas start passing out review packets or sheets of instructions as the school year comes to an end. These packets and sheets mark the beginning of the final exams period, during which time students will be evaluated on their understanding of the course material from the previous semesters through either extensive projects or written exams. The choice of whether to assign a final exam, a test, or a project depends heavily on the course subject. 

Many students can lessen their stress levels during such a crucial assessment by using projects. Some students prefer to be able to demonstrate their learning through a project that lasts several weeks rather than needing to do so during multiple consecutive hours. It enables them to approach what is typically a creative project slowly and methodically. Additionally, students who want to study for written tests in other classes now have time because normally their project isnt due the same week of the exams. This approach frequently has the drawback of requiring a significant time investment to complete a job effectively. “I personally definitely prefer doing projects to tests. Instead of going in and taking a test for an hour and a half, you get a much longer time to get things done right,” said sophomore Skye Mathieson.   

Some students use tests as an alternative means to demonstrate their understanding of a semester’s worth of material. Students get a test that lasts just a few hours rather than having to work on a project for several weeks, thus cutting down on the amount of time needed for that class. Some students favor this approach because they do well on tests and can effectively demonstrate their course proficiency on an exam. But because of the way exams are graded—a significant portion of the semester grade is based on a single test, which can feel like a lot of pressure—some students dislike exams, just as some dislike longer projects.

Students should be aware that the teacher will always choose the assessment strategy they believe will work best with the student’s abilities, even if there is no one “right” technique to grade students at the end of the semester. There are many options for pupils to succeed whether they are tested through an exam or a project.