The pros and cons of cramming before a test

The pros and cons of cramming before a test

Suzanne Kaiser, Feature Reporter

Cramming before a test is usually classified as an awful thing to do, but only part of this statement is true. There are both pros and cons to cramming before a test.

The first pro is that the brain remembers the information over night. Person tend to not realize that when a person falls asleep, their brain continues to work. It indicates that a person may study something just before going to sleep and still the brain works to understand the details, helping to solve unanswered problems, as well as remembering facts when they go to sleep.

Another pro to cramming before a test is that it helps a person concentrate. If procrastination has gotten a person into a position where the cramming session is required, the mind can shift into a results orientated mode of studying. When someone is put into a time restricted situation, it causes them to to use there time wisely and generally causes them to achieve much more studying than what they would usually do.

One final pro to cramming is that it is good for learning things in the short run. Cramming for a test can be very effective as long as a person is only aiming to learn something for the test, not for the rest of their life.

Everything that has pros also has cons. The first con to cramming before a test is that it can cause a person to undergo a high level of anxiety.  Cramming for a test just hours before has been linked to causing anxiety and fear. It results in high stress levels before, during and after a test. A person might feel physically sick, have trouble eating, feel jittery or forget small details, such as where they left their car keys, calculator or pencils. During the test, a person might second-guess their answers or blank out because they weren’t sufficiently prepared. After the test, they will likely worry that they did not score well and will feel anxious until they get the test results.

Another con is that the information that the student is studying will only be remembered momentarily. As previously stated, cramming is good for learning things short term as opposed to learning them for them in the long run.

Overall, cramming before a test can be good a good and a bad thing. If someone is just looking to learning things for the test and only the test, then cramming might be a good option. On the other hand, if  a person wants to actually retain knowledge, then they should actively study.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email