Final exams in the information age

Posted: December 4, 2008 in campus life

images-1Today is the first final exam of my second college career.  Since I’m up at 3 am I thought I’d ponder the differences between preparing for this exam and my vague memories of exams past.  First off, we didn’t have computers back then.  At least most of us didn’t.  Of course, they were available in the campus computer lab but we didn’t have cool programs like Adobe CS3 to amaze and make us crazy.  We went in to type our papers and print them in wordperfect.  You saved to disks, not flash drives.  We thought we were so techy.  Flash forward to now.  Not only do we all have our own computers, just about everyone has a microthin laptop they can drag to class daily. We carry massive amounts of information around with us on cheapy flash drives around our necks or clipped to our keys. My exam is three hours in front of a computer screen…no  # 2 pencil for this modern gal.    The programs can do everything but cook us lunch.  With all this snazzy new technology comes  a whole new set of directions for test taking… can listen to your ipods but the teacher reserves the right to check what you are listening to.  No telling who will record their own podcasts with the answers.  Makes me long for the days when we wrote the answers on our hands…errrr.. I mean I heard people did that, of course.  Those wonderful flash drives are banned from the test rooms.  Too easy to slip them onto the computers USB drive and wala….a copy of the test for your friends.  Once again, my high moral integrity would prevent this but I think it’s funny that the profs feel the need to even mention it.  New technology also brings new ways to prevent cheating.  You may ask, if our computers are online, what’s to prevent us from googling the answers during our exam?  Professor hotty McSurfer has a wonderful feature that allows his to have all of our screens up on his computer screen during the exam… cheating for you, kind of shady guy in the third row.  Try it and you will get a personal message telling yo to turn off your computer and go home…sorry, you fail!  

student31So in six short hours I will be struggling through three hours of Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign.  If you get a spare moment, send some good test taking mojo my way or just shoot me a txt message, I’ll be listening to old 80’s music on my iphone anyway.


  1. JulieP says:

    Wow, times have changed! But then again, I’m way older than you. I remember spending a fortune on a scientific calculator and then it took me a week to figure out how to use it. And our floppies were the big 5 1/4 inch ones…we had to use them to snag our chem homework. I was so totally clueless.

    Good luck!!!! I hope you kick some butt.


  2. laura says:

    you know you’ll do great!


  3. Raquel says:

    Good luck! You will do great!!


  4. Catherine says:

    Good luck on your exam!!


  5. Janae' says:

    Good Luck! and don’t worry, that one is actually kind of fun. the 3 hours fly by! 🙂


  6. Sarah C. says:

    Best of luck! I’m sure you will rock the exam. 🙂


  7. pam says:

    You will Ace it! Cheaters get smarter every year but sounds like the prof is on top of the game.


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