The Final To End All Finals: Junior APs!


With the rising tension at the Ramaz Upper School as finals season grows closer and closer, the students face a pressing choice: Option One or Option Two. Each and every vote can mean the crucial difference between a seamlessly stress-free and organized week of study, test, and repeat or a week of chaos and cramming. Should the Talmud final be after the study day, or should that day be reserved for Physics? Should Math be after the weekend, or should it be placed first so that this long, long week starts off with a bang? 

The answer seems simple to the eye of a calm outsider looking into the pressure cooker that is high school, but to the bustling mind of a Ramaz student, it’s more complex. One might think that the most difficult class should get the slot after the study day or the weekend, but students don’t always see eye to eye on what those “hardest” classes are. In my experience, the grade will split into two passionate bands of students arguing in hopes of flipping their peers’ opinions and getting them to vote for what they believe is the best schedule. Those two parties are the said-to-be “selfish” Honors Talmud students and the supposed “naive” rest of the grade. The former says that Talmud requires a study day, while the latter says that that coveted slot should be filled with a more material-heavy class. I have heard this exact argument occur an uncountable amount of times between an uncountable amount of my peers every semester for the past two years.

But now, an even more pressing question has emerged among the Junior class: When should the AP final be? The underwhelming options initially given left the Juniors and myself even more nervous for finals week than before. Either our grade could take this additional final on the same day as another, forcing us to study twice the amount in the same amount of time, or we could take it on a study day, decreasing our limited time to review for the next up-and-coming exam. Most of the Junior class was unhappy, and luckily some students advocated for other options. The ideas floating around were either to take the exam before finals week or after, but it was harder said than done to get it changed. 

From the beginning, it was clear that taking the test before finals week was out of the question, so how about afterward? For the microeconomics AP class, the decision was simple — they would take the test after intersession. But for my AP psychology class, it was a more deliberated issue. Seated among the juniors in AP Psychology are seniors. While the seniors don’t want to take a final after intersession, juniors, like myself, think that it is the best option based on our schedule. As there was no clear consensus and there were valid arguments made by both grades, the administration, thankfully, settled the issue by allowing juniors to take the exam after intersession and seniors before. 

 I can’t speak for all Juniors, but based on what I have heard, witnessed, and discussed, I have concluded that this decision was best for my grade. Although intersession is supposed to be a time to put the books to rest, the essays on pause, and the worries out of our minds, these finals need to be taken at some point and that point must be after intersession. There is simply no time beforehand.