This week I took my first real college test. Sure, I’ve taken the little quizzes, written essays, but a big college test, well; I guess I’m not in Kansas (high school) anymore. The exam was difficult sure, but mostly it was the whole experience of it all that really threw me for a loop. After I handed in my test and left the classroom I thought to myself, “Alright, I think I did well on that” but mostly I was thinking, “I need to write a blog about this” And so, my first college test experience:
Walking up the flight of stairs to my classroom I was greeted with panicked stares glancing up at me briefly from their notebooks as I walked into the room. As I took my seat at my desk I realized that everyone was there fairly earlier than usual. No one conversed with their neighbor, instead focusing solely on their own study sheets. The scribbling on lined paper or printed out notes was just another factor of this testing day that really shocked me. Everyone had his or her different studying techniques, I’m sure which were tried and tested for each individual person’s way of learning. Everyone seemed to be focused on themselves, which was both refreshing and nerve-racking. It was such a nice feeling to know that everyone cared about their grades and wanted to do well, but the silence that ensued the room did leave my nerves to act up.
As the professor walked into the room a pattern of unzipping backpacks, powering down laptops, and clicking the pencil or pen, making sure it was prepared for the task ahead, followed. The huge intimidating stack of white papers were put on the professors’ desk and with one last glance at the clock, handed out. With each pass back of the stapled sheets of paper, the test, my first college test, had begun. The professor proceeded to write the amount of time on the whiteboard, changing the time every ten or twenty minutes passed. The actual test taking was not too dissimilar, as everyone was furiously working away, asking questions as needed.
Usually when I would finish a test I would hand it in, sit back down, and wait for the rest of the class to also complete it. This is where the real difference of my test taking past and future was quite apparent. When the first batch of the students got up from their seats, tests in hand, they simply put it on the front desk and walked out of the classroom. “What, class isn’t over for another 45 minutes?” One by one, students who finished their test, got up, and just left. I am a slow test taker in general, so I got to witness this routine for almost everyone in the class, which left me in a state of awe.
My first testing experience felt like the movies. I would always watch these television shows or movies based in college and see the classic exam day scene, but to actually experience this first hand was quite surreal. Most of my general mind-boggling came from the fact that I have become an official college student. I know, I’ve been in college for over a month now, but for some reason it has yet to click that I go to SJU, I attend college classes, I’m working to obtain a degree, to get a job. This first college test has meant so much more to me than getting a good grade (fingers crossed); it really has signified the start of the rest of my life, my official transition into a college student.