When you have a test or exam coming up, you do everything in your power to make sure you do well on it. That includes all-nighters, cramming information last minute and maybe even brainstorming ways to subtly cheat (we’ve all done it).
The best though is when teachers allow you to have a specific amount of notes during the test that you can look at. Emphasis on “specific”. Reb Beatty is an assistant professor at Anne Arundel Community College in Maryland.
He’s teaching Financial Accounting this year and he’s taught it many times before. Every year, he allows his students to bring a 3×5 inch notecard with any information they can fit to the first exam. Last week, student Elijah Bowen realized something.
Professor Beatty didn’t specify the measurement unit in his “3×5 note card” instructions. So he showed up to the exam with a note card 3×5 feet.
Bowen joked with BuzzFeed News that he was going to bring a board that was 3×5 meters “but I wouldn’t be able to get it in the door”.
Beatty told BuzzFeed News, “My initial thought was that he wanted to get a few last minutes of cramming in before the exam started…”
He continued, noting “after approximately a minute I realized this was 3×5 feet, and he had the intention of using it on the exam”.
The professor referred back to his syllabus and every other place that had instructions and realized that he actually never specified “inches” anywhere.
Bowen told BuzzFeed that the class was giggling as Beatty was “frantically” searching for his course materials. “He looked at me and said ‘you are right,’” Bowen added.
Beatty ended up allowing Bowen to use his giant poster of notes. He posted a photo of the student on Facebook, writing “Well played and lesson learned”. The photo has now gone viral.
Beatty encourages his students to think outside of the box. He said, “I appreciate someone who A) had the intelligence to recognize this loophole and B) the audacity to put that together and bring it in”.