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My name is Charlotte Castelan, and I’m proud to be part of the Hawkeye View staff! I’m happy to say I’ve been a part of this club for all my four years at HEHS and hope to harness all the journalistic...

Finals can be both stressful and an opportunity for growth

Finals+can+be+both+stressful+and+an+opportunity+for+growth
Charlotte Castelan

This time of year can be wonderful and also challenging. Finals are right around the corner and so is winter break. This can mean studying and learning and maybe even cramming, which can be stressful. A topic that can arise during this test-heavy time of year is cheating. Cheating might sound like an easy way out of a stressful project, essay, or test, but is it worth it?  

It’s important to realize that cheating impacts two parties, not just the student. By doing so, it impacts both teacher and student. It’s easy for lines to get blurred between the when and why for cheating.

“I believe that students cheat because they feel certain pressure whether that be from parents, or self-inflicted standards they want to be able to meet, which I can completely relate to,” said Maja Ziobro, freshman.

Even if you have never cheated on an assignment, you may have thought about it. You may have even tried it once but never got caught. Getting caught, however, is not the only way we learn from our experiences. Reflecting about our experiences can be key to learning how to make better choices in the future.

When looking at who cheating impacts, it’s easy to only see the perspective of the student who commits it; however, how do teachers perceive it? Are they aware of cheating when it occurs, or does it fly under the radar? While perspectives of cheating differ teacher to teacher, two HEHS teachers have put their input on the subject.

Most of the time, the biggest giveaway is students not realizing that we can tell the difference between a student’s voice versus a fake. Authenticity is a nuance that AI can’t generate,” said Naz Ahmed, English teacher.  “What it comes down to is students trying to understand that learning is very process-oriented and not outcome-oriented. It’s not about completion, it’s about intelligence over ignorance.”

While English and language are very core subjects, other areas of schooling also deal with cheating and its consequences. 

“I don’t think they realize it’s cheating,” said Katelyn Crook, science department.

Crook said the intention may be to get help from someone else, but “comparing answers can turn into copying pretty fast.” 

Shifting the focus on to the students, their perspectives shed some light on the prevalence of cheating and finals. 

Cheating is “pretty easy, nowadays, especially when sitting in the back of a class, or even a notepad,” said Abdullah Haroon, junior. 

Although it should go without being said, cheating is a very negative habit to form, as it hinders growth and diminishes the value of academic achievements. As the upcoming semester comes to a close, upcoming exams bring a new set of challenges for students to navigate.

“Finals do definitely stress me out due to the pressure of wanting to do well on them. I do study because it gives me peace of mind; however, I don’t think it prepares me truly. After finals I definitely do feel better knowing I’ve done it and tried my best,” said Mallory Kolodij, sophomore. 

And while it’s easy to think of finals through a lens of negativity due to pressure, changing your mindset towards them can help look at them not as something to dread but something to look forward to. If the school year is a marathon, finals are just a last detour to get to the finish line. Prioritizing certain things can be difficult and while finding a method that works best student to student, a starting point can be time blocking.

“When it comes to organizing your time, time blocking can be key. Block out your valuable time, it’s just like block scheduling for classes. [Balancing] time is the same. Block out dinner, block out a shower, but also block out studying. Retaining stamina should be of importance, not just overwhelming yourself with repetition,” said Ahmed. 

Support is always available as well, if pressure is something that students might need more help managing. With the end of finals in sight, let’s channel our energy and honest habits, as well as school spirit to push forward. Success (and a deserved break) is just around the corner. 

 

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About the Contributors
Hey! My name is Gaby Antury, and I’m a sophomore. In addition to being a writer for the Hawkeye View newspaper, I am an avid reader and music listener. I’m very passionate about my pets, as well as my friends and trying to immerse myself more in the world around me. With time, I would like to go to college and always continue writing and learning.  
My name is Charlotte Castelan, and I’m proud to be part of the Hawkeye View staff! I’m happy to say I’ve been a part of this club for all my four years at HEHS and hope to harness all the journalistic skills I’ve amassed in the future. I’m also a part of our school’s National Honor Society chapter and Picasso Club; artworks ranging from paintings to articles are my passion. In addition to participating in clubs during my free time, I’m an avid movie watcher and music nerd who is obsessed with anything from the Beatles to Dua Lipa. As cheesy as it sounds, I’m appreciative of my family, friends, boyfriend, and super cute cat.