Final exam in Spanish 3 and 4

As a dual credit teacher I have to meet certain requirements for the community college where discrete grammar is still a focus point but in the upper level classes I am going to “reform” the final exam. We have been studying El Salvador in Spanish 3 and Argentina in Spanish 4. After film, novel, and culture study a “normal” exam feels anticlimactic. Does it really prove they can have and defend an opinion about these deep, meaningful cultural topics we have studied???

Enter my new idea. This semester in Spanish 4 we studied the Dirty War in Argentina and watched the film La historia oficial…. As a final, I am going to show the class the movie Cautiva during the last regular class period and the 20 minute study period they have during exam week. In the actual 90 min exam period we will watch the last 40 minutes and then they will write an essay during the last 50 minutes in which they use examples from what we’ve learned in class this semester to show whether they approve or disapprove of the way the protagonist in the movie was given to her biological family.

In Spanish 3 we did our film study of Voces inocentes and will begin a study of the Spanish civil war in quarter 4… I will show them Carol’s Journey (both films are about 12 year olds and set during a war) and ask them to make comparisons between Carol’s life and Chava’s.

If anyone has done this or has any advice about why I shouldn’t, I’d love feedback!