Final Exams

Source : 
General Directorate of Information Technology


Once again final exams for the semester are upon us. This is a critical time for our students. This week is dominated by intense studying, reviews, and test-taking. Although this is a difficult period, all of the hard work and sacrifice are worth the effort.


Our young people are the future of our society. It is imperative that we develop their skills, knowledge, culture, and religion to assure the Kingdom's continued success and development. Education necessarily involves a commitment to excellence and perseverance. These are the exact qualities our young people need to be successful in their personal and professional endeavors. It is incumbent upon us as educators to facilitate the continuing development of these characteristics in our young men and women. It is also incumbent upon the families of our students to provide encouragement and support during this challenging time.


One cannot overstate the importance of family support for students taking exams. Exams involve stress and oftentimes mental and emotional exhaustion for the student. Moreover, exams occur in a short period of time with multiple tests given in the same week or even on the same day. Furthermore, students have the additional and stressful burden of wanting to excel academically. In sum, students are under a tremendous amount of pressure during these examination periods. Educators and psychologists note the physical and mental side effects of examination-related stress. In addition, students often resort to stimulants and medications to ameliorate their adverse conditions. Side effects from these can result in even more unhealthy symptoms for things such as an inability to concentrate and sleep disorders.


The ultimate issue is how do we help students best manage the issues related to examinations. First, students must take the primary role. Preparation is the key to successfully managing obligations and stress arising out of examination periods. Students must learn to manage their time and work efficiently so that they have sufficient periods in which to study intensively for each subject. Also, students must eat well and exercise during the school year. A proper diet along with appropriate amounts of physical activity helps keep the mind sharp and increase endurance in studying. Having this positive atmosphere and orderly lifestyle will help students reduce the pressure they feel and anxieties that plague them during exam periods.


Families also have a significant role to play in helping students. Some young people are often distracted by mundane obligations or unimportant social activities. These activities waste valuable time that could be devoted to education. Families should encourage students to use their time wisely and make sure that frivolous or counter-productive activities are minimized. Also, families should monitor student behavior to make sure they are not resorting to artificial stimulants or other medications to deal with the stress of school. We should advise students to break their study activities into manageable chunks of time with sufficient rest periods in between. Avoiding 'cram sessions' and 'all-nighters' is important because these strategies most often fail. We should encourage our students to study in a manageable and consistent manner so that they do not burn out from exhaustion and/or anxiety.


We should be mindful that examinations are not a punishment, but merely a way of monitoring student achievement. The 'real-world' evaluates people based on results on a continuous basis. Examinations are a way of teaching students responsibility. Part of the benefits of tests is that it gives the students discipline to perform consistently under pressure. These are the exact conditions which they will face once entering the workforce and will live with for many decades. It is a best practice for students to take responsibility for exam preparation and overcoming the difficulties of being evaluated on multiple fronts in a short time frame.


Important Tips


By popular demand, the following is a list of practical recommendations for successfully - God willing - navigating the examination periods:


Exam Day


  • Wake up early after a good night's sleep.
  • Briefly review summaries of the main topics.
  • Eat an excellent high-protein breakfast.
  • Be sure to pray and thank your family for their support.
  • Plan on arriving 30 minutes early to account for delays.


Exam Time


  • Trust in God.
  • Focus on your knowledge, not negative thoughts or fears.
  • Remember that the test is a cumulative measure of what you learned throughout the year.
  • Acknowledge that you have done, and are doing, your best.


Other Helpful Tips


  • Begin by saying 'In the name of Allah, the most Merciful and the most Beneficent'.
  • Legibly write your name and student number.
  • Read through the entire exam before answering any questions.
  • Relax and take deep breaths during the exam.
  • Manage your time and try not to rush.
  • Be prepared to skip difficult questions and come back to them once all other questions are complete.
  • Check your work.
We ask God to help our students and to increase their success in this life and the hereafter.
Achieving Success Under Stress
King Khalid University - Media Center


King Khalid University is currently administering final exams for the first semester of the 1439-40 academic year. This is a significant undertaking. Approximately 60,000 students from 30 different campuses are taking final examinations en masse. Of course, this requires great effort on the part of our faculty and administrators.


Dean of Admissions and Registration, Dr. Abdulmohsen Al-Qarni, said 'Students have been working hard in general test preparation and have taken tests for numerous courses during the past week. During this period, the Deanship of Admissions and Registration was busy preparing the final exams under the close supervision of the university rector. The university took great care in coordinating all of the examinations and made sure that the tests best served the needs of the student, accommodating student preferences whenever possible'. Dean Al-Qarni also explained that the university is continuously seeking methods to improve the educational experience for the students and to ensure that student proficiency testing remains valid, fair, and balanced. All of these efforts, he related, are well worth it as increased student motivation and commitment to preparing for exams are increasing. Dean Al-Qarni urged all eligible students to submit proper documentation in the event of 'deprivation status' due to excessive absences. He concluded by emphasizing that the Deanship of Admissions and Registration is committed to expediting diplomas and transcripts for graduating students in that they can move forward with their careers in a timely fashion.


Dean of the Graduate Studies, Dr. Ahmad Al-Faye, said 'The Deanship of Graduate Studies embarked on a program to ensure optimal scheduling well in advance of final exams'. Based on feedback from many different colleges and their respective faculty and students, the Deanship of Graduate Studies identified several process improvements that helped to deliver a more efficient and effective exam timetable applicable to the different colleges. By consulting all of the relevant stakeholders in advance, the university ensured a more successful and more efficient final examination period.

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