Final Exam Day: why one test is an all day affair

Wednesday:  the best day of the week to take off, in my book.  I have a final today (well, all week, actually).  It is a multi-part,quasi-essay format exam; online with no time limit.  Just perfect for someone with ADHD (not).  I learned the hard way after my midterm that I really do need to chip away at it all week and not wait until the last-minute.  This is tough, because, as everyone knows…


So we’ve established that it’s Wednesday.  This Final could make or break my A- in the class.  So as soon as I drop the kids off, I get into test taking mode… and take a nap.  A glorious 3 hr nap.  My wife wakes me up asking questions about something I don’t remember (because I had been asleep) and I figure, maybe I should move on to the next stage of test mode: more procrastination.  So I start some laundry, empty the dishwasher, all the while slipping in test prep.  I make some coffee, get my snacks ready, get the music blasting.  I realize what a perfect blog entry this would make, so I start talking to myself about it.  at ~1:00pm CST I begin this blog.  about 5 minutes later I’m logging into the school website and pulling up the school’s website (because I have to start this exam before this bag of Doritos is gone (Jacked: 3D Jalapeno Pepper Jack) and this coffee is cold.

By 1:40 I’ve completed the first of 10 paragraph response exam questions.  Time to move the laundry over, brew another cup of joe, refresh my water (it’s getting a bit warm), and otherwise stretch my butt – it gets sore from sitting so long. I anticipate completing 1 more exam question before I need to pick up my kids.  Once I have them, I’ll put off doing more until later this evening.

So it’s 2:50 and amazingly, I’m ready for exam question 4.  Making great progress and it’s time to move the laundry over.  You get the gist of what’s happening here.  Some people call it “blitzing”.  I’m taking this exam in chunks, to avoid mental exhaustion and to allow time for other activities to maintain that mental and physical stimulation my mind would otherwise start to wander for if I were to sit and take this test in one sitting.  While I was being sarcastic initially, this really is the perfect way to take a final exam, at least one of this magnitude.  I’m not going to go into details about the entire exam, but you can see how, with what I’ve done so far, this really is an all day event.


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