Time’s up! Pencils down.

Kendyle Laesch ‘22, Photo Editor

No matter how well you think you are going to do on a test, it can still be nerve-racking. Test-taking is stressful in general.  Test-taking is a skill and requires much more than simply memorizing the content that is being tested. You think the test is going to be fine until your teacher launches a brick-sized packet onto your desk. 

When you hear “begin” your eyes involuntarily check the clock before even reading the first question.  Checking the clock becomes a tradition during the test for most, watching the dials tick away and each second turn into each minute.  

In stressful situations, your body releases adrenaline, a hormone that, among other things, is supposed to help you deal in times of crisis.  Adrenaline allows for you to be more productive in times of stress since it is considered the body’s natural fight-or-flight chemical response.

According to the Hormone Health Network, excessively high levels of adrenaline due to stress even without real imminent danger can cause heart damage, insomnia, and a jittery, nervous feeling. Not only are students’ grades in jeopardy, but also their physical and mental  health. Students would be less likely to experience those symptoms if they were given more time for tests. A reasonable extension for a test would be 15-30 minutes longer for students that did not finish the assessment in time.

In most cases, there are too many questions given and too little time to accommodate the questions. Sophomore Jessica Shaker said, “I definitely think I’d benefit from having more time to take tests. A lot of times I feel rushed especially if there are 50-ish questions.” Fifty questions is quite a load for being given only an hour to complete the assessment. A whole hour is not even always guaranteed, provided that teachers sometimes want to run through the test and address certain questions and procedures before allowing the students to begin. 

Students do not need hours to complete a test, but teachers should be sure that the students are given a reasonable amount of time to finish, whether that be through shortening the test or allowing time after school.  

Especially for subjects like math, where multiple choice questions are not as common, there needs to be more time to think through answers and to double check work. Yet, the reality is that students are rushing to finish their work within the hour. If students were given more time for tests, there would be more opportunity for students to show their knowledge on the particular topic and less stress.


Photo by Kendyl Laesch

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