How Stressful Can Red Ink Be?
By Torin Alexander
Hands sweating, heart pumping, feet tapping, getting back a test can be very tense. And what's even more torment is when you are able to see the teacher coming straight at you. At this point you can't be more flustered. Then the moment comes where you finally see your grade. So do students really care for what color the grade is written in?
Many school boards across the country have decided that grading in a red ink can cause even more stress to a student. But to be honest, as a student, I don't really care what color the ink is in, all I care about is the actual grade.
Red ink is commonly resembled to bad, which triggers kids to realize that they failed. To avoid seeing red ink is by actually studying! There is no reason why a student should be so sensitive that they can not bear to see the color red when they did not even study for the test or studied for a small period of time.
Taking a test can be very stressful, but if you only study for a small period, or not study at all, what do you expect the outcome to be. There is a very small chance that a student is able to get a good grade on a test without studying.
Students that do poorly on tests should not be rewarded with something like a green pen that resembles a good job. Failing is failing and there is no loop hole around it. What angers me the most is that the school board actually thinks that kids are this sensitive where even a color can push us to the edge.
Another thing that really irritates me is that the school board actually thinks its working. Kids should not be rewarded with a different color for their bad grade. A bad grade is a bad grade, and the sensors that cause them to have stress is because they got a bad grade, or they did poorly. Not because the grade is in red ink.
The school board does not want kids to believe that they are failures, which is understandable. Kids should not believe that they are failures, especially at a young age. In a study by the European Journal of Social Psychology, Michael Slepian concluded that kids stress sensors were shown to be higher when given a red “X” or “wrong” highlighted in red. Even though this may be true and that students can have higher stress from red ink, there is still a way to avoid this, and that by studying for test and asking questions to understand the topics in the class.
To conclude, excluding red ink to make a student feel better about a bad grade is very unnecessary. Students should clearly understand when they did poorly on a test and when they succeeded on it. Red ink is not the problem here, it is the student's willingness to study harder.
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