Editorial: Eight reasons to hate finals week


Lily Katz

Students study in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Building in Champaign on Oct. 4.

Slight disclaimer: This editorial contains a lot of complaining — about finals week. We are well aware that we are very fortunate to be receiving an education at this fine University and know there are many worse problems in the world (which we usually make a point to discuss in our editorials).

But sometimes, the Board just needs to complain. In the days leading up to finals week, here are the things we “can’t even” deal with anymore.

Grading calculators more complicated than the Morrow Plots

You made it this far, yet you don’t know where you are. It’s finals week and you’re trying to figure out what percentage you need on the final so you can get a good grade — or at least not flunk the class. But for some reason, your professor has decided to make figuring out your grade rocket science (hopefully you’re not about to flunk a class to become a rocket scientist).

Exam eaters

It’s always recommended that students eat a hearty meal before they take a big test. However, this doesn’t mean that students should eat during the test. Crunching, chewing and even opening wrappers is a huge annoyance to others around you. Not only does this distract other students from taking the most important test of the semester, it can also create a huge mess.

Tardy test takers

The exam is about to begin and you are ready. You’ve got your lucky pencils, calculator and ID card placed perfectly on your small pull-out desk in the middle of a row in the Lincoln Hall auditorium. As you start to scribble in that first bubble, you hear that dreaded “excuse me, pardon me” growing louder and louder.

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    The dreaded late student makes his or her way toward you, and you are forced to stand up and hold onto all of your prized belongings for dear life as they step on your foot and trip over your backpack. Then, they set up camp right next to you. Don’t they know it is every-other-chair seating? What if they have the same test form? And like that, your game face is gone.

    When your teacher is a party pooper

    It’s Thursday of finals week. Your roommates are popping champagne after finishing their MCB final while lucky you is headed to the library. Why? Because some terrible person way back when thought it was a good idea to schedule a final at 7 p.m. on the last Friday of finals week. The horror. Campus is deserted and you have to find your way to a lecture hall deserted with a few other sad people. A 1 p.m. final is acceptable; a night one is dumb. Bye.

    Table space hoarders

    Ah, the library: the social scene of finals week. A place to see and be seen. Where you study can determine the vibe of how you perform. From freshmen shenanigans at the UGL, to seriousness at Grainger, to study groups in classrooms all over campus. But alas, there’s some person taking up an entire table with territorial mama-bear eyes anytime someone approaches. We all have to study, so make room.

    End seat egomaniacs

    For the sake of all of our sanity this finals season, please don’t be that person who shows up to exams early and sits on the end seat of an empty row. Do you realize how annoying it is to climb over people who could have easily sat in the middle of the row, saving us all an unneeded headache? And on that note: You don’t always get to have empty seats next to you in exams, so don’t be shy and scoot on down.

    Disturbing the peace

    It’s understandable that students are tempted to talk while studying — even that story about how your friend’s roommate’s cousin’s boyfriend is a total jerk is more interesting than whatever gen-ed final you’re studying for. But it’s not understandable to deliberately sit on the quiet floor of the library and then talk the whole time. If you’re going to talk, you can’t sit with us. Go to Starbucks.

    “Fake” finals

    Giving a “third midterm” just before Reading Day comes from a place of good intentions. Theoretically, it’s less to do during finals week. It gives professors more time to grade, and it’s during normal class time. But this can make the week leading up to finals week even more stressful than finals week itself when more than one professor schedules an early exam and pretends like the class doesn’t have a final.