Test-taking in the Gym: Forget What You’ve Heard

Aaron Hendel, Breaking News Managing Editor

The day before I was supposed to take my first-ever test in the gymnasium, for Advanced Placement U.S. Government and Politics, the talk amongst my fellow students was not about the test itself. On the contrary, it was about the test environment.
Testing in the gym was not new; neither were the rumors I heard about the temperature dipping below 60°, the absence of a single functioning clock, the incessantly loud air-conditioning system, and awful lighting.
But after my experience, I will tell any future test-taker who walks through the double doors into the Staples gym to forget whatever you’ve heard. Taking a test in the gym was not that bad.
Actually, I think I can go out on a limb and say that I preferred it to a regular classroom, a room in the library, or a learning center, the other typical exam sites.
The best part about being in the gym is that it is secluded from the rest of the school. The number of students walking by, and walking by loudly, is low. No other classrooms are around; noise is as limited as it gets in this school. There is no outside distraction.
Regarding the temperature, I’ll admit it was a little cool. But personally, I’d rather be chilly and kept alert than sweating in the baking heat that many classrooms, particularly on the second floor, have started to generate this time of year. And if being a couple degrees under room temperature is such an issue, just wear a sweatshirt or jacket. I brought one with me, but upon realizing that the temperature was fine, I took it off.
Also, forget about the missing clock rumor; there were three accurate clocks in my view.
To be honest, now that I’ve experienced one test in the gym, I wish my regular finals in June were in the gym, too.