Editorial: Give students more ‘dead days’

Student Senate passed a resolution Tuesday calling for an additional study day, also known as a “dead day,” in the lead up to final exams. Currently, UTA only has one day allotted for students to study before exams begin.

UTA should heed this resolution and provide students more dead days before finals. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, students need extra time to study and prepare. UTA should have made this accommodation before the pandemic, but COVID-19 has made it even more urgent.

Both UT-Austin and UT-Dallas offer two dead days between the end of classes and final exams. We think UTA should meet the UT System norm and add at least one more study day to its academic calendar.

A 2016 survey by MentalFloss found that 31% of students say their biggest source of stress is finals week. A different study conducted by the American College Health Association found that 34% of students reported that stress negatively impacted their academic performance.

Months into a global pandemic, we can only assume that students' stress is heightened. According to the World Health Organization, heightened fear, worry and stress are natural responses to COVID-19.

UTA must provide students with as many reasonable accommodations as possible during these unprecedented times.

The Shorthorn editorial board is made up of opinion editor Spencer Brewer; Editor-in-Chief Shay Cohen; news editor Angelica Perez; Cecilia Lenzen, life and entertainment editor; sports editor Chris Amaya; David Silva Ramirez, life and entertainment reporter; and copy editor Andrew Walter.

opinion-editor.shorthorn@uta.edu

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