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The Student News Site of Jupiter Community High School

War Cry

The Student News Site of Jupiter Community High School

War Cry

The Student News Site of Jupiter Community High School

War Cry

Opinion: Testing season and its negative effect on mental health

Opinion%3A+Testing+season+and+its+negative+effect+on+mental+health
Mackenzie Shultz

The increasing number of state-wide tests being implemented have been costing high school students their mental health. As the school year progresses, students will begin taking several different tests such as FAST tests , AP exams, AICE exams and end of semester exams which leads to heightened anxiety and stress in high school students.

“I think at the end of the school year it puts a lot of pressure on the students but also the teachers because they put all their tests into a month and that makes stress levels go up,” Anna Pegler, sophomore, said.

Psychologically, testing causes high anxiety and poor sleep along with other detrimental issues. The design of the traditional multiple choice tests and free-response tests are not complementary to how some student’s brain works. People who tend to struggle with tests may already have testing anxiety so when they are taking tests multiple times a week it can negatively affect their performance creating more stress. 

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America have stated that there comes a feeling of disappointment, anxiety and hopelessness when it comes to people with testing anxiety. Many students have reported that testing has lowered their self-esteem because they feel the only thing that matters in school is the score you receive on a test.

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“I feel my anxiety levels rising. I do feel more stressed and I feel I’m trying to keep balance with my home life, social life and school work and overall that is very difficult to do,” Pegler said.

In an article from the Los Angeles Times, The American Psychological Association has studied teenagers from ages 13 to 17 to better understand how they are impacted by standardized testing. In 2020, the study showed that 87 percent of students feel that standardized tests amplify their stress.

“I just feel like if teachers take things a little bit slow and realized how much they’re teaching us and stay on the important things, we will be more prepared for the test instead of feeling more stressed out than we usually should be,” Gabriella Michels, senior, said.

Testing can start as early as kindergarten. These early years should be used for enjoyment and learning things about the world around them but instead tests are beginning to be introduced in attempt to measure a certain intellectual standpoint that not everyone has reached.

Mental health has decreased drastically as testing has risen. Academic performance is now measured solely on test scores on these standardized tests, but it does not take into account the outside factors that could be causing lower test scores.

“More of my free time and my personal time is being taken out of what I like to do to study for these tests that sometimes are overall pointless,” Pegler said.

Testing season has become something to juggle along with the rest of the lives of the students and many are struggling to keep up with the workload causing a decline in the mental state of students.

“I play a sport so that combined with testing, I feel like I’m just trying to remember so much at one time and it’s just too much to handle,” Michels said.

Students are spending hours studying for these exams on top of all the work they are already assigned. Some are more equipped than others to deal with this amount of pressure circled around their education.

“I spend a lot of time studying. I don’t have a lot of free time and now that extracurriculars are over I feel like I am just kind of getting all my work done,” Thomas Gerring, sophomore, said. 

 

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