We’re overwhelmed, and we know you probably are too. It seems like our first full semester back after COVID-19 picked right back up at full speed, doesn’t it? 

With finals coming up, everyone is scrambling to wrap up the semester. Feeling so limited with time can become extremely stressful. Thankfully, Saint Joseph’s provides us with a reading day to prepare for upcoming exams. This year’s reading day was on Saturday, December 11th.

Yes, you read that right. Saturday!

We started to ask ourselves, is reading day even worth it? Many universities take part in “dead week”. Dead week is the week before finals where classes end and students can take the time to study, prepare and finish up their work. We asked Hunter Barkhorn ‘22 and Jaden Walker ‘23 to speak on behalf of students to see what their opinion on dead week is, and if a singular reading day is actually beneficial.

How do you typically spend your reading day? 

Barkhorn says that on his reading day he likes to relax, recharge and maybe catch up on some work. Walker agreed saying that she primarily will use a reading day to catch up on sleep, do household chores and occasionally study or do school work that she has fallen behind on due to other extracurricular activities. Both students concluded that its hard to get work done on a singular day when there is so much to be completed. 

Is it pointless to have reading day on a Saturday? 

Walker thinks that a day during the week would be much more beneficial, considering Saturday is a day off school regardless. Barkhorn agreed that having a reading day on Saturday basically defeats the purpose of a reading day in the first place. Many students (including us) will use our weekend reading day just as we would use any old Saturday. 

Feelings on Dead week vs. Reading day

Walker and Barkhorn both agree that having a full dead week would be extremely helpful in preparing for finals rather than one day. With a dead week, there’s adequate time to finish school work and also allow overworked and overtired students time to relax and recharge before exams. It’s hard to fit all the things students need to get done in one day. 

It’s no doubt that reading days are definitely helpful, but it may not be as much as students need. Taking a “dead week” into consideration wouldn’t be too bad! Finals are crazy enough, especially when you add in students extracurriculars, clubs or work. How do you feel about reading day this year?

Wishing everyone good luck on finals and a great holiday break!