LEAKED FUTURES: "Glaring spotlight on the precarious state of Indian education," UGC-NET candidate Suparna Roy on exam cancellation

The UGC-NET exam was recently cancelled due to paper leak reports amidst other ongoing irregularities in other examinations like NEET-UG and NEET-PG
LEAKED Futures
LEAKED Futures(EdexLive photo)

Indian students are crying foul amidst the numerous reports of examination scams. Marred by allegations of paper leaks and malpractices, the cancellation of entrance examinations like the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) and the University Grants Commission's National Eligibility Test (UGC-NET) has left them in the lurch.

Speaking to EdexLive, an independent researcher and second-time candidate of UGC-NET from Kolkata, Suparna Roy shares how the cancellation has impacted her. UGC-NET test determines the eligibility of Indian nationals for ' Assistant Professor' and 'Junior Research Fellowship and Assistant Professor ' in Indian universities and colleges.

"As a concerned observer of the educational landscape in India, I feel compelled to address the significant psychological impact of the ongoing cancellation of national tests such as UGC NET and NEET on students and researchers. Many people view these exams as significant turning points in their academic and professional careers, so delaying or cancelling them affects not just the participants' schedules but also their mental health," said Roy. 

"To succeed in these tests, students and scholars have dedicated months, if not years, of intense study time. There is a great deal of tension and worry associated with the scheduling and administration of these tests. Students are left in a condition of uncertainty due to the frequent rescheduling, making it difficult for them to confidently plan their future academic or professional pathways. This uncertainty can cause stress levels to rise, motivation to drop, and even feelings of hopelessness and despair," she added. 

Stressing that these cancellations reflect a broader issue within the political management of education in India, Roy remarked "The lack of consistent and reliable policies underscores a systemic failure that is diabolic in its consequences. It exposes the vulnerabilities in an education system that should be a pillar of stability and support for the nation's youth."
 
Additionally, she reiterated, "The lack of a clear timeline exacerbates the psychological burden. Students are left grappling with the pressure to remain focused and prepared, without knowing when or if their efforts will be assessed. This prolonged state of uncertainty can have long-term effects on their mental health, including anxiety disorders and depression."

Educational authorities must acknowledge and deal with these psychological effects, she said. Further, as measures of this negative impact, Roy suggested, "Some stress can be reduced by open communication, prompt updates, and the provision of mental health support. Additionally, looking into different evaluation techniques or accommodating exam dates may provide students and researchers with a sense of security and control during these trying times."

Sharing thoughts on how the cancellation impacts the system in the country, Roy said, "The ongoing cancellations of national tests in India are not just an administrative concern but also cast a glaring spotlight on the precarious and chaotic state of Indian education." She further insists, "The well-being of students and researchers must be prioritised to ensure they can continue their academic and professional journeys with resilience and hope."

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