Friday, April 27, 2007

Exam Hijinks

The course I'm a teaching assistant in had its final exam recently. My students wrote in a large auditorium that also had a science course writing at the same time in the front section of the room. As with any exam, we have to escort our students to the bathroom to ensure that no one is in there cheating, should they actually need to use the restroom. With 30 minutes left in the 2 hour exam a student on the far side of the room raised his hand and I headed over with the expectation that it was another bathroom run.

"Um, my cell phone is buzzing in my pocket and I just wanted to let you know that I'm turning it off, and not cheating."

"Ok, that's fine, " I said, as I watched him take out the offending cell phone and power it down.

"Oh, and I was wondering if I could have some extra time? I'm feeling really rushed on the last section of the exam and want some extra time." He said as he looked at me like I owed him something.

My left eyebrow raised slightly and I must have given him a look of contemptuous amusement when I replied. I had to hold back from laughing as I told him absolutely not in no uncertain terms. Clearly my answer left him unsatisfied as I heard the student bitching loudly to his friends as I picked up the papers after the exam how it was "bullshit" and we should have given him extra time.

Yeah son, I'll give you and none of the other 250 students in our course extra time because you haven't learned how to time manage during an exam. Unbelievable.

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