Friday, August 8, 2008


The very word “Examination” throws jitters into the body of a student. Oh! What an ogre this examination. Let us consider the system and why it has become a nightmare? What do we examine for, is our aim in examining children fair and clear to us in our minds? What really do we want to assess! Actually what we really want to asses is whether the child knows all that he has learnt but is exam a true criteria? I feel definitely No.
Our examination system as it stands today is just a test of the memory of the student and not what he knows. For, if he knows all that he has learnt in the process of the year, why does he have to burn the midnight lamp just a few days before the examinations. He is clearly just mugging or memorizing all that he has learnt through the night and will vomit all on the examination paper and get a certificate of proficiency. The proof of the hollowness of his knowledge can be adjudged even immediately after his exam for, sure enough, hi will be a clean slate even a week after the exam. So, what has been achieved through the year and what do we achieve by making him pass through the hurdle of exam?
The exams as they are taken today are more of memory tests and are no indication of the child’s intelligence, or his special field of interest. Here it is that we can pinpoint the major defect of our examination system. A child who may for example score 80% marks in English may when asked, not be able to write even one page of correct English. So, what has been the achievement even after attaining 80%. This is a clear indicator of the defective system that is our examinations.
studying this lop-sided system of examination I feel, it would be more appropriate if we assess the child’s achievements in the work done throughout the year. We must think of ways and means of developing and assessing his intelligence and other mental qualities rather than, only his quality or capacity of cramming. The present system of examination does precious little in churning out really intelligent persons, instead, it just mechanically brings out crammers, who cram and pass through the exam – little knowing what they have studies. Such a product is and will always be of low quality, as he has only the capacity of memorizing.
If we want the children to know what they have studied and also retain it all, we have to change our method of examining their capacity. In the present system we only examine his capacity to cram but what about the other qualities he may have, when and how do we assess them? Our examinations should be of the total individual personality and the total frame work of all his capacities. Only then, when he emerges out of educational institutions we will be able to fit him in his correct slot. Presently, when he is out of his educational career, neither does he know where he will fit nor do we know what we can make of him. Is this what our examinations are meant for? It is thus, now time to reshape our examination policy in order to know what we are examining, what we are examining for, and how much he gets through our scales of measurement.
If we revamp our examination system, we will also avoid the present scenario of police patrolling an examination hall instead of the invigilator keeping a vigil on the students. This happens because children know that their passing an exam in necessary, their degree is a must to take them to the employment market. If children know that getting a degree was not to be the all and end all of career making, I am sure such bandsters and gangsters would not care to sit for any examination.
Besides, an entry into the employment market without a degree in India gives some sort of a hollow status to an individual. It is for this status that children try all means to get hold of a degree no matter what they are worthy of.
Thus, time is now ripe when education, examination, degrees, employment should all be viewed in their proper perspectives. If this is not done on an urgent basis, I am afraid examinations will become more of war fronts and degrees a complete farce. We have to work towards our goal of finding out our intellectuals and put them on the errand of nation building rather than continue with these baseless education and crumbling examinations.

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