What is the purpose of education: Scoring Marks or Gaining Knowledge?

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Know-Mark

 

M D Sridharan analyses whether the priorities of the studying changed from gaining knowledge to scoring more marks.

The number of students getting high percentage of marks is getting significantly higher every year in both the X and XII public examinations conducted by state boards across the country.

Scoring 450 and above out of 500 in the X public examinations or scoring 1150 and above out of 1200 in the XII public examinations has become normal and every household has a boy or a girl with such a high percentage of marks to boast of. Further, I am indeed perplexed that in the recent times, especially in the last couple of years, there have been reports that many students have scored centum in subjects other than maths such as science and social science as well.

Though overall it reflects that many students are now studying well and are able score such high marks, the results do throw questions that need to be answered. It also implies that the standard of education has fallen.

Some decades back, a boy or a girl scoring above 70% was considered to be brilliant and parents proudly say that their ward passed out with distinction. But, today someone scoring 85% is considered as an average student, as today marks are simply being doled out easily.  Obviously, it lowers the standards and ultimately falters the prevailing educational system.

GirL Study

 

Reasons for scoring high marks:

This raises a moot question, are we moving in the right direction when it comes to education, especially at the school level across India. Whatever may be the real cause, we need to analyze the reasons for the high scoring patterns across India.

  • Is it really due to the increase in the brilliance of the students? Or simply put that today’s generation is extremely sharp?
  • Or the result of an easy evaluation system?
  • Or because the majority of the students are simply mugging it up the lessons rather than understanding the subject thoroughly.
  • Or due to the fact that most schools across the country make it a dictum to ensure higher pass percentage.
  • Or majority of the schools force the students to long hours of study and make them to appear for several revision tests before the public examinations.
  • Or the students are virtually are trained to memorize the answers without leaving even the punctuation mark and write the exams.
  • Or by default, due to all these factors, the mentality of the student is also tuned to attaining good marks only.

We need to be cautious in future

In most schools, it is unfortunate that the teaching methodology is more tuned towards scoring marks alone and the whole exercise only drastically improves the memory power of the students rather than gaining knowledge. As a result majority of the students from state boards lack analytical thinking and fumbles when comes to problem solving. Overall, the situation does not augur well for the student’s career.

To certain extent, even the parents are also to be blamed. As majority of them want their wards to become engineers and doctors. Our current educational system does really help both the students as well as the parents to realize their dream of entering in to an engineering college or medical college on the basis of marks obtained. A closer look reveals that, the fact remains that most of the students from the state boards fail to make a mark in IIT-JEE and other national-level examinations.

But, the present scenario raises several doubts on the competency of today’s education system.   We need to be cautious in future as the real test lies in improving the overall quality of education rather than simply registering high pass percentage.   It is a genuine concern of all stake holders such as the academicians, the management of the schools, teachers and the state governments to take a closer look and completely revamp the system. After all it is the duty of everyone to make the student more knowledgeable rather than simply score high marks.

Boy doing his homework at desk in his room

 

System need to be revamped

Schools are considered temples of learning, but it looks like that most of the schools, have forgotten the basic purpose of education. The school level of education is the most important for the students in building their career. It lays the foundation. Rather than imparting knowledge most schools are focused on making the students achieve more marks. With the whole educational system across the country tilted towards scoring higher percentage, knowledge no longer seems to be on the priority for most students today. The present scenario raises several doubts on the competency of today’s education system.

It looks like that most of the schools, have forgotten the basic purpose of education. Rather than imparting knowledge they are focused on making the students achieve more marks. With the whole educational system across the country tilted towards scoring higher percentage, knowledge no longer seems to be on the priority for most students today.

Scoring high marks is good.  But, what is the point in keeping the marks as the main objective ignoring the foundation of building knowledge. It is the ‘learning’ factor that needs to be revamped. We need to be cautious in future as the real test lies in improving the overall quality of education rather than simply registering high pass percentage by mugging up.    It is a genuine concern of all stake holders such as the academicians, the management of the schools, teachers and the state governments to take a closer look and completely revamp the system. After all it is the duty of everyone to make the student more knowledgeable rather than simply score high marks. The fact remains that knowledge based learning not only achieves their potential.  But also really broadens the scope of having a bright future for the students.

  • M D Sridharan

 

 

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