Mid-year Exams

By Joshua Sampson

Yes, it was that time of year again. Everyone’s favourite time of year, that is of course unless you’re a student, teacher or parent. In fact it’s basically just Mr Burge’s favourite time of the year.

That’s right – I’m talking about mid-year exams. Now I know what you’re thinking, mid-years finished two weeks ago, and you’re right but if you hadn’t already figured it out, the publications committee’s not exactly the most prompt team at Kristin. Compared to how late the first edition of MDNW was this article is ahead of its time.

Anyway, let’s get to the complaining. First of all, why are they called mid-years? They’re not even in the middle of the year, they’re in May for crying out loud. They’re not even in the middle of the school year.

More importantly, why do we even have mid-years? This was the question I began to ponder after I read my Spanish exam papers and, realizing that I understood nothing, gave up on all hope of passing. This is a question that many students struggle with and it leads to dissatisfaction.

When asked their opinions on mid-year exams students’ responses included “The worst part of the school year”, “All the bad parts of end of year exams without the holiday at the end” and “We have midyear exams?”

After much pondering in the middle of my Spanish exam I had to stop, feeling that I should at least attempt my paper. During that time, and in the two weeks since I have managed to come up with a few reasons for having exams randomly stuck in the middle of term 2, or at least things that I learnt from them.

The first thing I learnt was that making a study schedule is actually pretty effective and much to my surprise I can actually stick to one. This was pretty helpful for the next one, which was that I learnt that I can cram 40 hours of study into a 6 day period.

Why, you ask. Partially due to having several internal assessments due in week 1 and 2, including the notorious EE, and partially just due to my complete lack of time-management and self-discipline, I found myself starting study the Saturday before exams. So I decided, for the first time in my life, to make a study schedule and amazingly it worked.

The third thing that I learnt was that doing 40 hours of study in 6 days isn’t a good idea. Sure it was possible, but I finished the week exhausted, ready to curl up into a ball and sleep until spring (although as a year 13 IB student that’s quite a common feeling). Needless to say I’m not planning on leaving it that late for prelims or end of years, although knowing myself I probably will.

How does this have anything to do with you? You probably started studying earlier (you don’t have to be so superior about it), or you have already listened to the good word and used a study timetable, or you are logical enough to figure out that 40 hours of study in 6 days sounds like pure hell (in hindsight it’s pretty obvious).


The point is that mid-year exams and Mr Burge are made to be, so it doesn’t look like they’re going to be going anywhere. So, instead of complaining, or more likely while complaining, maybe, just maybe, try and take something out of them.


Whatever you learn, you can be sure to stay up to date right here on The Daily Dove.


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