In Reducing Anxiety, RQAs Pass the Test

Quarterly RQAs have replaced the two-hour semester exams of the past.

Photo Courtesy of Creative Commons.

Quarterly RQAs have replaced the two-hour semester exams of the past.

By Joe Raab, Social Media Editor

Starting this year, Montgomery County Public Schools officially got rid of Semester exams and replaced them with Required Quarterly Assessments known as RQAs.

By replacing the exams, the county has gotten rid of the stress of exams and created much better system than the one previously installed.

According to The British Psychological Society, using student test scores on high-stakes exams as a measure of the students’ and teachers’ ability has increased test anxiety.

Everyone knows the feeling of pressure when you walk into an exam that you need a good grade on. The pressure of that test or exam can often be too much to bear. By eliminating the exams and replacing them with smaller and lower-stakes tests, it allows the students to focus more on other assignments and not just a big exam that determines the letter grade that shows up on their transcript.

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, causes of test anxiety can include fear of failure, lack of preparation and poor test history.

The period before RQAs was very tough on students. For each class, there was nothing but scan-trons and packets that covered everything from the semester. Talk about stress.  Getting rid of exams got rid of all of the things that came with it, and that benefits the students, who are already stressed enough.

According to Social Studies Department Head Rodney Van Tassel, getting rid of exams will only hinder the performance of students, and will not prepare the students as well for college, where there are exams.

Although getting rid of exams does take away some of that experience, students also take SATs and ACTs, which are big tests that will give the students the experience of taking exams.

Although there was some apprehension surrounding RQAs, they pass the test. Getting rid of exams and adding RQAs has benefited the students by taking away stress, and making this time of year much more enjoyable.