Students in a course should get exams with equal difficulty

Students in a course should get exams with equal difficulty

Students in a course should get exams with equal difficulty
January 27
22:21 2019

College is already stressful, so why do some professors feel the need to make it harder for us college students? Stick to the basics, Give us materials to read and/or watch, issue quizzes and exams and preferably, give us some extra credit opportunities here and there.

But don’t give us unequal exams.

Last semester, I didn’t do so well on one of my exams, and when I went to discuss my poor exam grade, my professor told me something that shook me to my core.

“Oh, you got one of the harder exams.”

I wanted to rip up my textbook. What do you mean I “got one of the harder exams?”

My professor explained that all of the exams issued in that class had varying levels of difficulty and each student was given a random exam. Some students were lucky and got an easy set of questions. Others, like me, got harder exams.

There is no way giving exams like this is fair to anyone. I studied for two weeks straight for this particular exam, reading the textbook word by word, reading the material posted on Canvas, going to office hours and going to Student Instructor sessions.

I’m an “A” student and this was the first time since freshman year I had to do all of these things to make an “A” on an exam. I didn’t care at the time because I really wanted to do whatever it took to get the 89 I had in the class up to an “A.”

My professor ended up giving me credit for some of the questions I got wrong and even regraded other student’s exams because the wording made some of the questions unclear. Besides the questions being hard to understand, the fact that I received a hard exam and other students got an easier exam turned me red. So the way to get an “A” was by luck?

Now in the syllabus, it did say the exam questions were randomized, but I thought this meant the questions were all the same and only the order of the questions were different to prevent cheating. I had no idea it meant I get completely different questions than all of my classmates.

I get that some college students cheat, but this shouldn’t mean giving us unequal exams. Not every single college student cheats on their assignments and exams. With the current protocol, it punishes innocent students.

Honestly, how are we going to cheat while taking an online exam? Do professors really think we all get together and take the exam simultaneously? Because we don’t.

Even if students decide to cheat, that’s on them and they should suffer the consequences. The consequence for cheating is listed on every single syllabus. Plus, most exams are timed and there isn’t even enough time to cheat. You either know it or you don’t.

I don’t have a problem with professors making different exams, but the exams should be equally as easy or equally as hard. The keyword being “equal.”

Finding out I could get a much harder exam than my fellow classmates did nothing but stress me out and make me worry. I was either going to get all the easy vocabulary questions or all the long, scenario questions.

In 2019, everything should be equal. Including all exams.

Featured Illustration: Chelsea Tolin

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Jacqueline Guerrero

Jacqueline Guerrero

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2 Comments

  1. article quotes
    article quotes January 28, 05:08

    Very quickly this website will be famous amid alll blogging people, due to it’s pleasant content

    Reply to this comment
  2. Sam K
    Sam K March 13, 08:30

    This is one of the most ridiculous things I have ever heard. I’ve never known a professor to do this in my experience. Wow. Professor needs to re-evaluate his teaching method. Just have an A and B, maybe even a C, exam version that shifts up the order of the questions. Problem solved

    Reply to this comment

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