Final Exams Return to Loyola

Edward Nieman, Writer

It’s been nearly two years since finals were last given inside the classrooms at Loyola Academy. The last time finals were given, masks were only worn in hospitals, wildfires were raging in Australia, President Trump was impeached, and Lil Nas X’s latest hit “Old Town Road” was taking the internet by storm.

Since then the world has changed drastically. The days of Zooming have come and gone and life has begun to return to normalcy, which means finals are back. As December rolls around, final exams have once again become a hot topic of conversation among many Loyola Academy students.

This week students will occupy every empty table in the library, halls, academic resource center, and simply any quiet space available to use to study for the final feat that lies ahead next week.

Senior Klaudia Partyka says that the finals nerves that she felt two years ago have returned.

Klaudia is, in fact, not alone in feeling nervous for finals.  A study by The Counseling and Psychological Services at Brown University found that one of the most common scholastic impairments in schools today is that approximately 16-20 percent of students have high test anxiety, and an additional 18 percent struggling with moderately-high test anxiety.

As for studying, Klaudia expressed that she plans on using study guides that teachers made available to
students saying, “This year I plan on going through study guides I have received as well as using quizlets to memorize terms and concepts.”

Klaudia also said that her trick to studying for finals was using time as an advantage, “It might seem excessive but I like to prepare a planning sheet a month in advance to allow me to study little bits over time.”

By doing this, Klaudia says that she will only need to do a total of about five hours of studying this week.

I also sat down and interviewed Samantha Nieman, who is a Loyola graduate, to get her comparison of finals in high school to finals in college. Samantha said that many of the same study techniques that she used at Loyola for studying for finals she still uses in college.

“I’ll either use the study guide that the teacher provides or make one of my own. I study condensed versions of my notes to nail down the specific concepts and terms.”

Samantha gave advice to Loyola students studying for finals saying, “Test out different studying methods and figure out what works best for you. You won’t study the same amount of time for each test so give yourself plenty of time in advance to begin studying.”

She also added that prioritizing classes that you are struggling in can help as you will know the information in the classes that you are succeeding in better to begin with.

A common piece of advice that was reinforced in both my interviews was, as important as finals seem, they will not define you as a person or student.

Both Klaudia and Samantha said that doing your best is the only thing that you can do.