Exam Stress

Exam Stress

May 21, 2011 Old Blog Uncategorized 1
Students taking a test at the University of Vi...

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It is now the middle of exam season in the UK. The majority of students have just had exams, or are preparing to have them. It is not just restricted to those students who people might expect, but Year 6 students (age 11) have just had to do SATs, many students sitting formal exams will have end of year exams from their school. Many schools are using modular courses so pupils in Year 10 as well as Year 11 will be sitting GCSE exams. AS exams and A level exams are going on. Even higher than this University students are sitting finals or possibly trying to finish off a dissertation. This all leads to a lot of stressed people.

For a lot of students they will be stressed about doing revision. Especially students who are on study leave, where you have the freedom to do the revision you like, when you like. Yay, the freedom. The reality for many people will be  the freedom to find anything else to do, except revise. There are countless people who have spent their time cleaning, organising, baking. just so they are doing anything but revise. Then getting down to the actual revision, but needing to make a new version of your revision timetable to account for the time lost to other activities. This obviously needs to be fully colour coded, which adds another hurdle as you can no longer find your colouring pencils in this new organised set up you have created.

Finally when you do get do doing some actual revision things don’t seem to get any better. You find some bits you know like the back of your hand, and they seem too easy to be on the exam, and then other bits you have no recollection of, were you even taught it? Surely your teachers didn’t do it. A quick text to a friend reveals you did do it and they know all about it. Oh dear. Anyway, after a good half an hour revision session you can reward yourself with 10 mins of TV or xbox. That turns in to an hour.

Students are generally worried because they want to do well, and have an idea of the results they will need to do what they want after education, and have the pressure from their own hopes as well as those of teachers and family. They could be many that have in their mind that they have a back up plan. I could retake this, change my course slightly, there are options to fall back on. Maybe for some people they know they can fall back on their parents, and for others (if we believe what we read in the media) there are always benefits.

The results are often stressing teachers out as much as the students. The teachers have been preparing the students for a year or two for the exam, and now need to sit back and see what happens. When they do find out, they need to explain why the students got those results, were they what the teacher predicted? Why did they not get their target grade? Why did they exceed their target grade?  All of these questions can be asked, the school needs to show how good it is and look at the results, so they can show they have 60% of students getting 5 A*-C GCSEs, or what ever measure they want to use.

Looking down the middle of Fort school

If you have a school with 70% 5 A*-C at GCSE, those will be considered very good results. The Fort school, run by the Madras YMCA, in Chennai as had a 100% pass rate in exams. 100% pass rate for 6 years running. This from providing education to slum children who live locally, not any one identified as ‘gifted’ or ‘talented’, just ordinary children, who wouldn’t be able to afford school otherwise. Maybe they have the motivation to learn, and the knowledge they have no second chances, no wealth, no benefit system to fall back on. In the words of JLS, they only have one shot.

If you wanted to help provide a new school for students at Fort then donate online, or text FORT01 £5 to 70070.

So go on, take out a few seconds to make a donation to help. Then maybe get back to your revision


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