I’ve just gone through an unproductive exam last week. Anger, frustration and regret are all mixed up and fresh in my memory. Therefore I can’t keep quiet but to express my opinion that all external examination should be abolished. Following are major five reasons of why I think exam is unnecessary.
This is my main concern. Most of the time students don’t perform well in exam due to stress. You can see for instance, some students cope well in class and produce a distinction grade course work but when it comes to exam, everything is a doom. Students should be given more relax environment to learn what they are thought. Exam only cause exertion of information. From my personal experience, I merely memorize everything needed for exam and during that period I dictate what I remember. After the exam answer sheet is collected, my memory will be erased automatically. The stress often kicks in during the memorizing stage. When the stress accumulated into a big balloon, depression slowly leaks in. This will bring us to the second reason.
Some students don’t handle stress well. This cause a serious psychological defect as we commonly known as depression. This is the reason why you constantly read about student suicide or student turns insane after exam result is released. Because of this I would suggest that exam is a risk of losing talent. These students are vulnerable when they don’t live up to the expectation of the examiner or their parents. Yes, let’s talk about ‘expectation’. Different stages of expectation causes the issue of unfairness.
There are several points on this. Firstly, examiner tends to detect they answer they expect in the answer sheet. They often have a standard marking scheme, thus leaves no flexibility for students to approach the question beyond what is expected. Blame no one but the examiner that students are getting uncreative. Secondly, different students perform differently. Some students are comfortable with course work but some students prefer exam. Therefore, it is unfair for students who are better in course work. Exam would deprive these students from displaying their ability. Lastly, parent’s expectation may cause unnecessary stress which leads to reason number one. Thus, I would recommend a better alternative to exam would be technical training. In the next reason I will discuss about exam that does not reflect working environment.
#4 It does not reflect real working situation
Exam does not prepare students to the real working life. What is required for us to answer in the exam questions often confined into several topics. And these topics are delivered in lectures. Isn’t this what you called spoon fed? The relevant theory to replace the spoon feeding system is the doctrine of empiricism. It is a theory based on observation and experiment where empirical knowledge is derived from sense data and experience.
#5 Environment threat
Lastly, exam causes a serious environmental threat, although this may not be a strong argument. In each exam hall, approximately five trees will be chopped down to produce the required amount of paper. Let’s do a little math. If each exam period holds 20 batch of exam, 100 trees are down. This excludes students own preparation where they have to write notes on paper. It is difficult to judge how many trees will be the victim for the students’ preparation. To help curb global warming we should abolish exam. Agree?
I have a strong urge to bring this discussion to the examination board. But it is rather ridiculous to do so. I am confident that I can easily get a petition of 100,000 students name who are against exam. Even if a referendum is required, the vote against examination will definitely exceed two third. Will you sign your name here to support me?