Published: 01st August 2020
Why are you all TESTY? The debate on whether to conduct online exams or not amid the COVID-19 pandemic
As the nation tries to figure out the future of examinations, The Coach offers a perspective on how we can evaluate students fairly
The debate on whether to conduct exams online or not has heated up in our country. I am not an expert or authority to question our education system. But can definitely take my own experience into account and give my two cents. Has the time finally come for all of us to ask the million-dollar question: Is this pandemic finally giving us a chance to look BEYOND MARKS?
Each of us is unique and possess different skills. My argument on this issue has always been that we cannot judge the ability of a fish by making it climb a tree. The vice versa is fair, isn’t it? The same way, I was branded as a failure throughout my life because I was constantly failing in my subjects. According to the system, I’m hopeless! but today, most of my clients consider me priceless. Who’s wrong? Am I flawed or the system? Of course, no one would have thought that I’d excel in this field, not even me! I cannot help but wonder how my life would have turned out to be if our educational system had some means of assessing our personality traits, skill sets or even our instinct.
All I needed was someone to tell me, “Dude! Your empathy levels are very high, so are your protective instincts. Why don’t you put these skills to use by becoming a therapist or life coach?” That’s it! It would have been fantastic if my own teachers could have identified these traits rather than look at me, roll their eyes and facepalm inside their heads. Of course, not all of them... But a majority of them had branded me as a failure and had lost hope. The ones who didn’t are the ones responsible for me becoming so committed to my cause and profession...simply because it made a lasting impression in my mind about how IMPORTANT EMPATHY and SUPPORT are, whilst also making me realise how badly it hurts on the other side. This has kept me DRIVEN to ensure that I prevent as many as I can from experiencing what I’ve gone through. How can we look beyond marks?
Gurukulas: If we explore the roots of OUR OWN EDUCATION SYSTEM — The GURUKULA SYSTEM, I’m sure we can find most of the answers. If I take up the old Gurukul System and combine it with our modern educational system, we can consider the GURU as the subject matter expert. But more than marks or exams, the guru would make the disciple learn EXPERIENTIALLY rather than THEORETICALLY.
Psychometrics: There are a lot of tests available today that are quite accurate in mapping out the personality traits of an individual including kids. But the next thing we need to figure out is how this can be STANDARDISED.
Equal focus on life skills: Though I see a lot of schools making it a part of their curriculum, life skills are still pretty underrated according to my opinion. I’ve seen some remarkably brilliant people having a tough time coping in the real world because of their lack of people skills.
Though we have a long way to go, my intention today was to spread awareness that gone are the days when you were just required to be SMART, today it’s all about being STREET SMART. How we EVOLVE is a collective effort and that’s what we need to figure out, TOGETHER.
Adarsh Benakappa Basavaraj