A new study suggests the Leaving Cert is leaving students stressed.
Research carried out at DCU and Trinity College, Dublin, finds young people are relying on rote learning and memory recall to get through exams.
The report's author, Dr Denise Burns, says it is not the best way to develop critical thinking skills.
Dr Burns said: "Another aspect about the huge emphasis on memory recall is that it's a huge source of stress for students and we know that families have been through the stress that these students go through when they're facing up to the Leaving Cert.
"It's this big volume of information that they have to cram into their heads which is a big source of the stress."
She went on to describe the State exam system as a "senseless burden" that sees students are relying heavily on rote learning and out-of-hours grinds.
Dr Burns said: "The Leaving Cert is a memory test and it is really a senseless burden on student memories.
"So students are learning off essays, textbooks and notes and this is largely what grinds schools do, so this creates disadvantages for students as families cannot afford grinds.
"This is a major inequality in the Leaving Cert system."
- Digital Desk