How Has Distance Learning Affected Test Taking?


Janell Wang, Staff Writer

With the onset of the pandemic, schools had to close down and go completely online. While distance learning is a necessity in a situation like this, there are some major concerns that come with it. The concern that I am addressing in this article are tests and seeing how they have been affected.

One of the biggest challenges now that everyone is learning from home is that cheating has become more accessible than ever. Anyone could just open another tab or have their phone or a cheat sheet hidden off camera. With so many ways open for cheating, it has become a real difficulty and pretty much near impossible for teachers to moderate tests. Instead, teachers have to rely on and trust the integrity of the students. Of course, there are always bound to be some who end up cheating anyway. This is really unfair for students who really study hard and do their best on the test. It’s also inconvenient for the teachers when they catch it and have to deal with the student’s dishonesty. 

“Cheating isn’t fair. It’s the student’s responsibility to understand the content the teacher gives you,” said sophomore Sandra Aw. 

Another obstacle of distance learning is the schedule. At AHS, a new schedule has been implemented with a later starting time, earlier dismissal time, and blocked periods.

However, the drawback to this is that since all six periods are on only one day and shorter than the rest of the week, teachers usually designate Mondays as test days. Speaking from personal experience, this can be quite stressful when you have three to four tests on the same day. 

“Test dates make me anxious and stressed, period,” said sophomore Helena Wang. 

Lastly, with online learning comes the oh-so wonderful technical difficulties that anyone is bound to encounter at one point or another. There’s always a moment of panic when you are taking a test, and all of the sudden your computer decides that it didn’t want to work and dies on you. Those precious minutes of test time were regrettably wasted. Then there is, of course, the testing format to deal with. Whether inputting answers through Illuminate—which takes forever to do—or waiting forever for your test to upload, especially with a bad Internet connection, it can be a real hassle. 

Despite all these difficulties, health takes priority. Improvements can still be made, and everybody is working to develop them. 


Graphic courtesy of MINUTESCHOOL.COM