Tuesday, October 20, 2020
Examination

There is no correlation involving one’s intellectual skill and overall performance in examinations

Published by Avijit Pathak
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Current: October 16, 2020 9:05:29 am


It is important to realise that a lot of younger college students rarely discover any assistance as they pick out their topics and enter schools. (Illustration: C R Sasikumar)

As the Delhi University announced the reduce-off lists for university admission, we commenced to realise the absurdity of the entire method. No, if for “branded” colleges, 100 for every cent is the minimize-off for disciplines like Economics and Psychology, there is no cause to think that it demonstrates the superior top quality of our college education. Instead, it displays the vicious cycle of rote studying and inflated marks, it indicates the poverty of pedagogic creativeness and shows a really mechanised method of getting into the realm of increased instruction. In other words and phrases, it signifies the injury the procedure does to youthful minds.

Ours is a society that worships “success” and adores the “toppers”. And this is specifically why it ought to realise that there is no important correlation among one’s mental ability or academic excellence and one’s general performance in board examinations. It is rather possible, as any keen observer of the prevalent process of education would accept, to score 100 for each cent in English without the need of obtaining any curiosity to enter the intriguing entire world of poetry, quick tales and novels. Or, for that make a difference, the “topper” in Physics want not necessarily have a scientific mood or the eager urge to have an understanding of the guidelines of character.

The experience of speculate, the pleasure of learning and unlearning, or the spirit of enquiry — absolutely nothing matters as the widespread procedure thinks in the fetish of quantification. And, ironically, this trend for “marks” transforms a learner into a intelligent purchaser the only skill she/he is needed to master is the skill to consume know-how capsules (“facts”, info, theorems) abstracted from textbooks, and memorise involved bullet points as emphasised by test-oriented teachers and coaching centre gurus. With a collection of mock exams, countless drilling and long-term obsession with position (universities sell the “toppers” as excellent “products” for enhancing their industry value), a youthful learner is finally minimized into a parrot — repeating what is crammed in her head, say, two parts of information and facts about Raja Ram Mohan Roy, 6 info about Gandhi, or a physics theorem to fix a numerical.

In a planet of this type, there is no poetic wonder, no criticality of social science, and no enquiring spirit of science. A single is only an test warrior. Furthermore, as the “fact-centric”/“objective”/quick thoughts turn into the new regular, and the electricity of memorisation is the critical to results, it turns into exceedingly challenging not to get at the very least 80 for each cent in the board assessment. And these who get even 95 per cent have a tendency to endure from melancholy. This is practically nothing but violence — the pathology of “success” triggering the stigma of “failure”.

At this juncture, it is also crucial to realise that many of these young learners hardly discover any steering as they select their topics and enter faculties. There are two reasons for this. Initially, as educational disciplines are hierarchised via the pragmatism of market place rationality, young students — generally pressured by the panic-ridden mother and father, and pushed by the peer culture — have a tendency to favor “prestigious” topics like Physics, Economics, Commerce, English literature and Psychology, even if they are not intrinsically inclined to these topics. And second, in the age of “ranking” faculties and universities are hierarchised.

Editorial | 100 for each cent failure: The marking method is dead, lengthy stay marks. Delhi University’s slash-off disaster speaks of a damaged instruction system

That’s why, to acquire an illustration, St Stephen’s or Woman Shri Ram Higher education is frequently eaten as a extravagant “brand”: It is not extremely hard to locate pupils who, for the reason that of the “brand consciousness”, like the “prestigious” university fairly than the matter of their liking. The subject — Sanskrit or Education — does not make a difference Miranda Household, or Hindu College or university at any price! This mass psychology of use even more complicates the politics of the cut-off issue. Not only that. It destroys human possibilities. 1 who could have contributed immensely to the analyze of Hindi literature ends up pursuing Economics or, for that issue, one who carries the burden of St Stephen’s Economics may have discovered authentic fulfillment in pursuing Background in a not so “reputed” establishment like Deshbandhu University. Of course, the craving for “status” triumphs — education suffers. In actuality, the program functions like a soulless device. It is far more fascinated in doing away with people today (you never have 99 for every cent in the board test and consequently, you can not do Sociology at LSR). It is not for locating or arousing one’s true aptitude and inclination. What an irony! Just a person evaluation and we decide one’s fate.

Imagine the depth of mental agony these youngsters pass by way of. As social Darwinism is normalised and hyper-competitiveness becomes the philosophy of the age, universities develop into very-oppressive establishments. Limited bodies, intensely-loaded school luggage, weekly checks, by no means-ending home assignments, consistent performance panic, parental strain and the urge to be a “topper”: The globe they inhabit has no rainbow, no sunset, no audio it only breeds psychic stress and some form of sadomasochism. Even though the likes of Rabindranath Tagore and Jiddu Krishnamurti felt the suffering of this neurosis, the program continues to be as it is. And no make a difference how a lot we price these “toppers”, or really feel very pleased of these “top-ranking” colleges, the society we are producing is certain to be poisonous and violent. Indeed, melancholy, loneliness and schizophrenia are certain to characterise the restless technology. In the coming yrs, newspapers, it appears, would get started creating editorials about students’ suicides.

Is there a way out? An respond to to this question is attainable only if we get the braveness to settle for that one’s curiosity, aptitude and awakened intelligence can’t be calculated by a pattern of evaluation that compels a person to be a robotic performer somewhat than a resourceful wanderer.

Also examine | Discussed: What does a 100% cut off in Delhi University in fact signify?

This article to start with appeared in the print version on October 16, 2020 below the title ‘World of examination warriors’. The writer is professor of Sociology at JNU.

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