There are a number of reasons why I prefer final exams to final projects.
Exams take less time. A project tends to involve a significant amount of research. You not only have to be prepared for the day the project is due, but you also must put the entire thing together. It would be like not only taking a test, but also making one up.
Projects can be a pain, especially when working in a group. Some classes offer a semester-long group project in place of a final exam. Very few people claim to enjoy doing group projects. It’s hard finding time to get everyone together, and often, one person ends up doing all the work.
Exams are better than projects because you know what you are getting yourself into. Teachers usually structure all of their tests the same, which means you know what to expect by the end of the semester. Preparing for your final exam will be easier because of this. Also, if the exam is cumulative, there is a chance that you have already been tested on some of the questions used in the final exam.
Projects usually involve some form of presentation. This means you have to get up in front of the entire class and show how much you know—or don’t know. Some people do not enjoy being put in that position, especially when final project grades are often a large percentage of your semester grade.
Overall, final exams take up less time and are easier to prepare for than final projects.