Final and Midterm Exams

a Necessity for High School Learning

Final exams and midterm testing are necessary preparations for students in both continued education and career outlooks beyond high school. Pennridge High School has shifted its original midterm and final testing style from a 90-minute period test that equals 10 percent of the student’s grade to an assignment in which teachers can designate multiple days and sections of projects or adaptive testing. After Covid shut down schools, Pennridge removed the required finals and midterms from the curriculum as they began modifying for hybrid and virtual learning. However, removing these crucial exams has rapidly decreased student preparation for life outside of high school.

Educational systems have been forced to modify curricula to respond to the new demands of the changing world and its students. One way that many schools have conformed their courses is with the removal of most units or final testing. In reference to cumulative work assignments in similar recognition to college tests, Tammy Rissmiller, an experienced AP Statistics and Calculus teacher, stated that “projects would be a good reflection of college.” It is commonly argued that final assessments do not accurately represent what a student has retained through a semester or year-long course. It is unethical to expect students to earn high grades on a cumulative test of all the information within a semester.

Regarding final assessments vs. final assignments, Kurt Hutchison, a career pathways educator, said, “assessments cover anything and everything that measures student knowledge,” showing his support for finals and midterms being reestablished in our educational system. Hutchison also understands “your education, and your learning is an investment,” which must continue to be evaluated and challenged to receive maximum benefits. Reintroducing final and midterm exams is the best possible option to prepare high school students for rigorous college-level testing and other strenuous responsibilities in the real world.