Papers vs. Exams
So there are people who would argue that there is a division between the arts and humanities on the one side and the sciences on the other.
Heck with them.
The true divide in disciplines is between the people who spent college writing papers and the people who spent college studying for exams.
(Of course, while I say “spent college” it’s worth remembering that much of this activity occurs in a few isolated frantic, panicked nights. Or over a few days for people who are, like, super-organized.)
This is an important difference—a vast and insurmountable cultural gulf. One that I am clearly on the right side of. That is to say, the side that has it harder. That is to say, the side that gets to righteously complain.
Oh, you English majors going around being relaxed on finals week. We in the sciences curse you. Sometimes to your faces. You might be turning in a stack of essays approximately the height of a small rat, sure, but…you have a finals week without any actual finals.
What. The. Serious. Arrgh. Blrrgh.
For all that the stereotypical college student questions is “Will this be on the test?” it’s not one that I personally hear very often except, like, the day before the test (when it’s a legitimate question whose answer is frequently “no, it’s on the next one”). It’s not often asked because the inevitable answer of “See this book? Know it. All of it,” which is just too depressing to contemplate.
Bioenergetics and Clostridium perfringens and blots for every single cardinal direction, and that’s the way the song goes.
And this is why I get to both envy and feel superior to all those who only—
—wait, what? I have to write what for my Writing Proficiency course? Three entire pages? Are…are you sure?
…wouldn’t you rather give me an exam?