“Study (verb) – The act of texting, eating and watching TV with an open textbook nearby.”
I’ve been meaning to write this post for a few weeks, but I’ve been so busy being wholly apathetic towards all other acts requiring effort—such as school, studying, homework, or any form of painful reading—that it’s only natural I turn this in late, too.
Okay, fine: I’m exaggerating a little bit. But in the past month or so, I have indeed noticed a disturbing combination of symptoms during my everyday school activities. At first, I refused to even consider the possibility of it being what everyone says it is. This doesn’t happen to me! I’m a hardworking, 4.0, attentive student who would never seek out this condition…and yet, the condition found me…
Alright, fine, I have Senioritis. But now the question is, how bad do I have it? There are different phases of this, after all, and my friends and I aren’t exactly flat-lined slackers (yet, anyway). I’m not making this up: recently, senior skip day was announced, and my friends and I all checked with our parents to see if they were okay with it (luckily, they were). One senior girl in my AP Psych class did all of the textbook outlines over break, because she was afraid she wouldn’t have the motivation to do the last few at the end of the year.
There are a few levels of Senioritis. I’d say they range from a scale of one to five, which I’ve elaborated on since I have nothing Earthly better to do.
Level One: Low-Level Case
This student shows occasional lapses into laziness but is generally still productive, hardworking, attentive and as ready to learn as ever. Student does their homework thoroughly and consistently, never turning it in late. While they may have fleeting thoughts of being finished with school and will occasionally take a break to have fun, their main priority is school and finishing strong, just as they went in.
Most at risk: strictly academic students who, if they don’t downright enjoy homework, at least are one with its importance. These students most likely have an immunity to higher levels of Senioritis either because they’ve built mental blocks against it or their parents have forced them to.
Overall condition: hardworking, productive, with the same grades as always but also the same level of joy/fun (that level being average. A huge no-no during what’s supposed to be the time of your life, in my opinion).
Level Two: Mild Case
This student will mostly do their homework but probably at the last minute. Around 50% of the time, said homework is saved to be done sometime before class the next day. While the student makes sure to keep their grades mostly the same as usual, a general lack of effort slowly works its way into homework and academic participation, making this goal harder to reach. Student most likely no longer cares about being tired for class and will stay up late to finish episodes of their favorite TV show (the nightly Big Bang Theory marathons on TV don’t help, either). In class, they listen attentively, but information absorption rate is dangerously low, and consistent studying habits have disappeared entirely.
Student is generally apathetic towards school, becomes bored as the day progresses, and when the final bell rings they’re seen running for the exit like:
Most at risk: Students who have worked hard for four years, have gotten solid grades, and need a break from it all, preferably soon. These years of schoolwork have been good and beneficial, but they need to finish up soon.
Overall condition: While this student is only a notch less productive than usual, their investment and motivation is on a steady decline. Graduation is looking as scary as ever but, for the first time, also welcoming.
Level Three: Severe Case
This student has been ready to graduate for months, and motivation levels are nearly depleted. Homework is done, but rarely on time and with minimal effort applied. Student is frequently staying up late, either to watch TV, think about graduation, or do the work that was due a few weeks ago. Or was it a few months? Who cares! Student has gotten into a good college, and as long as they don’t commit any felonies, they’re basically in the clear. Student might occasionally take notes, but will rarely if ever use them to study.
Most at risk: Students who started actively counting the days until graduation before said count was lower than 100. School is a nuisance, and one barely worth showing up to. Requesting Advil and/or rescue parties immediately.
Overall condition: Student mentally graduated from school by the end of the first semester and is waiting for their body/society to catch up with their brain. Paper is used for random sketches and tests are something to be feared, because seriously, who studies for those things?
Level Four: Extreme Case
WHY ARE YOU BOTHERING ME AT THIS HOUR OF 9 AM LET ME GO BACK TO SLEEP.
Students with an extreme case of Senioritis will be irritable, unproductive, and most likely have a wall on which they’re tallying the days until they can say goodbye to their school forever. Effort on all assignments will be minimal if present in any form. Said students’ faces will be permanently fixed with expressions similar to those of Grumpy Cat.
Use caution; these students are dangerously irritable and not to be approached. Especially if they still have graduation requirements to meet.
Most at risk: Students who earlier developed “Junioritis,” which is what high school Juniors label their inherent laziness so they can feel better about themselves.
Overall condition: Unproductive, thank you very much.
Level Five: Fatal Case
This being is so afflicted with Senioritis that nothing can be done to save them. They can’t even be labeled as a ‘student’ anymore, because little to no homework/class participation is being produced, and subject reacts with extreme hostility when approached about such things. Subject has a stack of ‘tardy’ slips in their bedroom taller than their unopened math textbook.
Most at risk: Students who have been slacking since the first day of high school.
Overall condition: ‘School,’ ‘Homework’ and ‘Class’ have all been permanently removed from student’s vocabulary.
Me? I’d say I’m at a solid level two.
For now, anyway.