News Exams

Sunday 19 November 2017

Exam Diary: 'I've never written as much – or as fast – in my life'

Laura Gaynor

Opening my exam, I was glad for the cramming I did. While 'endurance studying' can ruin a creative paper like English, for business it was the hero of the day.

I don't think I've ever written as much, or as fast, in my entire life. Yes, I know the old argument: quality, not quantity. However, this didn't stop me smugly standing as my mini-thesis printed out.

Leaving Cert business consists of 10 short questions, four long ones and an applied business question. Normally the latter is very vague. Often, it's a chance to engage in the art of writing loads while knowing very little. A key question for Ireland's future politicians.

This year, I noticed there were lots of questions relating to Europe. This probably had something to do with Ireland's EU presidency. Lucky for me, I've been making videos for the European Movement for their Youth Media programme. I had a mini-celebration when I saw an open-ended question to discuss Ireland, the Presidency and the EU. And to think, I thought I was dossing with this 'out of classroom learning experience'.

Lots of my friends sat art history & appreciation in the afternoon. I took art for Junior Cert and dropped it afterwards. However, had I studied it, I would have been at an advantage in the exam. As per the art appreciation course, you had to visit an exhibition to write an essay on it. I was part of a cross-Border group who curated one called 'Double Vision' last year. Nonetheless, I'm glad I don't do art. When asked to summarise the exam in one word, my friend described it as 'brutal'.

After any exam, no matter how it went, I look forward to slashing it off the timetable. So, annihilate it from the timetable and try your best to obliterate it from your memory.

Even though I still have some exams to do, I took last night off to chill out. My means of chilling out? Well, I am on a budget. It hovered between the dancing horse on YouTube and a slice of toast. Anything beats studying!

Laura Gaynor is a student at Ursuline College, Sligo

Irish Independent

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