Open-Note Tests Would Be Such a Relief


Lesly Hernandez, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Imagine, you have a test the next morning. All you can think about is how you have to memorize all the information you can think of. You start going through every page of notes that you have for that class, but now imagine having to do that for every single class you have.

Students are having to memorize a huge amount of information for a test, sometimes for five to six of their classes. Doing this can take a toll on students and it’s not necessary.

There are other options that teachers can offer to make it easier for their students when taking a test, such as allowing them to use their notes during a test.

Tests should be open-note because open-note tests would lower anxiety in students, which is crucial in a time like this.

The pandemic affected students’ mental health in very different ways, some more than others. Distance learning also had a significant role in impacting students’ mental health, which can affect a students’ performance in school as well as proficiency in school work.

Open note tests can promote the development of skills that can help students later in life.

Note-taking skills would be an example. Students are always taking notes during a class and will continue to use such skills during college. Note-taking skills can also lead to organization skills, which is an imperative skill to learn that makes life easier for students.

Writing down the facts of a subject can be more useful in some classes, like history, since memorizing important dates can be extremely hard. If the student were to write down the dates, they would understand the concept of the subject rather than forget the date and forget about the importance of the lesson.

Preparing students for the future is a topic that’s heard of all the time. Open note tests would prepare students for various tasks they will need to do outside of school. 

For instance, if a student is asked to solve a problem or answer a question, it’s not realistic for them to complete such a task using only the knowledge they have in their mind. Figuring out other ways to solve a problem, whether it be by researching information and writing it down,  would help develop growth in students.

Others may argue that tests shouldn’t be open note because students have an opportunity to cheat and they could then look everything up and not learn anything.

Nevertheless, letting the student know that a test would be open note would encourage the student to take notes on the subject, furthering their knowledge even more than simply trying to memorize the information.

In some cases, it makes sense for the test to not be open note as the material has to be memorized, such as a math equation. In others, open-note tests would be beneficial for the student since the information is harder to retain.