The exam system is an imperfect assessment of creativity and knowledge – Kashmir Reader
It’s exam time, a time of stress for students and parents. Everything that has been learned in one year will have to be reproduced in a two-hour written test. All students will be assessed on what they have written in two hours.
It is pretty obvious that there is something wrong with our education system. All year round, students are cramped with knowledge and this knowledge is tested in a two hour exam. It is only the students’ ability to memorize certain facts that is tested. Human capacity, however, is not limited to memory. There are a whole bunch of things, from arts to literature, music, innovation, entrepreneurship, that humans can and must do to save our planet from its myriad crises. Do we equip our students for this task?
Our education system is obsolete, totally out of step with the current political, social, cultural, scientific and environmental conditions in which our children live. Our education system is not focused on encouraging critical thinking. It creates a host of rote learners who believe that good grades are the only goal in life. The way our education system is structured, self-doubt seeps into our consciousness and eats away at our ability to think independently and critically.
In this flawed education system, teachers are not experts at imparting wisdom to students. A middle class room is like a prison where no one except the teacher does what they want. Students cannot even sigh freely. Asking a research question is prohibited and whoever raises a different question is tagged as a nuisance. Novelty and criticism, the very essence of creativity, is a crime in a classroom. The same concern was expressed by Rabindranath Tagore in his short story, âTota Kahaniâ, about a free-spirited parrot who only knew how to jump, jump, fly and sing all day long. A king ordered the bird to be civilized, so he was put in a golden cage, and so many instructions were forced into his throat that he soon forgot to sing, jump, and then couldn’t even anymore. yell. When he tried to fly, his wings were cut off. Soon the parrot died without saying anything or singing.
This is exactly the case with our educational system where students learn to pile up rather than seek the truth and the nature of truth. What would have happened if some of the pioneers of human history had allowed the tensions of modern education to reach them? Did the Wright brothers invent the first airplane? Did Alexander Fleming dare to invent penicillin? Graham Bell would he have caused the communication revolution he made? I do not think so. Our education system creates robots that only memorize and access information. Our society as a whole suffers.
The fundamental flaw in this educational system is that it creates students with aggressive minds instead of challenging them. It is relevant to mention here that last night I had a conversation with my cousin, a 10th grade student at Akhal Kulgam government high school, in which she said that their English teacher, Iqbal sir, had been transferred. and that there was still no one to replace. him. I was disheartened to learn that the task was given to their Urdu teacher. One can easily predict what kind of skills and knowledge their Urdu gentleman will impart while teaching English. The education department itself has violated the guidelines of the transfer policy in which it is stated that âThe transfer of all educational staff must be done at the start or end of the academic session. No academic transfer in the middle of the session will be made â. It is high time that the Ministry of Education avoided these untimely transfers in order to preserve the bright future of the students.
In addition, we need to modernize our program. School should not be a place to accumulate knowledge but a place where they acquire knowledge on how to deal with life situations. We should get rid of the archaic exam system and students should be assessed on the skills they develop and their ability to create, build, cooperate and find solutions. A student’s assessment should focus on understanding real-world problems and creativity rather than grades and grades. The current dogmatic approach should be abandoned and a new open education system which imparts knowledge, helps creativity and makes students feel relaxed and elated should be introduced. I am just a student, not an educational expert. The thoughts I have collected here are based only on my experience.
– The writer is a postgraduate student in political science. [emailÂ protected]