Yes, Students Should Cram.

By Angelina Wei (IV), Contributing Writer

In a fast-paced school environment like Boston Latin School, there is no realistic way for students to juggle countless assignments, assessments and out-of-school responsibilities without cramming. As the most practical study method, cramming helps students in their professional and academic careers, preparing them for their future careers and allows them to develop skills that will benefit them beyond the classroom.

Cramming improves students’ ability to absorb information quickly. Austin Nguyen (V) shares, “I started to cram for tests and quizzes, and each time I crammed, my comprehension skills became better and better. I started receiving amazing assessment results in a matter of time.” The ability to absorb information rapidly is a life skill that can be applied to one’s professional career, as learning is a lifelong process. 

By regularly cramming, students are also able to manage deadlines more efficiently. This builds up time-management skills, so much so that stress and pressure diminish and become easier to deal with.

Such a skill can be applied to professional experiences like job interviews. During an interview, anxiety skyrockets as the interviewee must formulate a response on the spot. Being familiar with that kind of pressure reduces stress in the moment and helps the interviewee succeed.

Cramming also hones one’s concentration and heightens attentiveness, which is necessary for achieving preferred outcomes with limited time. The mindset of intense productivity as a deadline approaches can be applied in the workplace or to other responsibilities, allowing individuals to excel.

When cramming, short-term memory improves. Remembering concepts in preparation for a test makes them more prominent in a student’s short-term memory, benefiting them during an exam. Nguyen adds, “The information I obtain is able to marinate in my head just long enough for me to thrive during my exam.”

While cramming has occasionally yielded undesirable results, there are a plethora of techniques a student can employ to effectively cram, such as laying out the foundation of the concepts using notes, textbooks, study guides and more.

Although cramming can be seen as a method of absorbing superficial, fleeting knowledge, it helps students learn how to manage their time effectively, identify key concepts and prioritize information under pressure, which can all prove invaluable beyond their academics. Even if their knowledge gained through cramming is not retained in the long run, the skills and qualities developed can be instrumental in shaping a successful and fulfilling life.