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Old 6th April 2020, 18:34   #1
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Default Are 10th exams necessary?

Hi all,
I would like to dedicate this thread to all the students out there. Students who have worked hard day and night, who have had to give up their sports coaching classes to study more, who have been to tuition straight from school, and those who have given up on sleep.
They are all facing a problem.

Postponement of Exams.

While CBSE students have finished their exams, ICSE students still have some papers left. SSLC(State Board) students on the other hand, the country went into a lock-down even before their exams could begin.
So, to allay the fears of most parents and students regarding conducting of exams, our Honorable Minister of Primary & Secondary Education and Sakala (Karnataka State)
Sri S. Suresh Kumar, came live on PUBLIC TV to answer the questions of anxious parents and students.
Most of the questions that were raised were the same.

When are the exams going to start?

While answering these questions, the minister himself asked some parents if they wanted their children to write exams or simply promote 10th standard students in the same way 1st to 9th students were promoted.

Most of the parents wanted their kids to write exams because they wanted their kids to get seats in good colleges.

I thought otherwise.

Are exams really necessary?
Don't we need a change?
Shouldn't our education system consider getting a revamp?


Indian universities in the historical past have always been the seat of learning. Nalanda and Takshashila universities in the past had students coming from all corners of the world. Education system was the most advanced in the historical times.

I think our decades old education system needs some changes.
I'm not against our educational system but I think we badly need a change.

To be honest, apart from getting admission into a college for 11th std, the only time my 10th marks card helped me was when applying for Learner's license at RTO so far.

Similarly, whatever was taught during my engineering days was of no use to me because I chose to not pursue my career further in engineering like M.S or M.Tech.
With most of the students taking up science only to please their parents (that includes me), whose decisions in their career were taken by their parents, this made me think otherwise.

Parents work hard day and night to provide a better life to their children.
Student's happiness = Parent's happiness.

When students are going to be happy if they are promoted further without any exams bothering them then let that be.

Would love to hear your views on this dear bhpians


Disclaimer
Views expressed above are personal. Not meant to defame or disparage our educational system.
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If the thread feels inappropriate, causing harm to anyone, please feel free to remove it.
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Old 6th April 2020, 20:49   #2
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Good thought but I'm sure we're not prepared for such a move especially right now, this can be thought of as part of a revamped educational system for the future.

Such a move right now will not be possible practically as its not a level playing field for everyone simply because many sudents who pass out of one board (especially ICSE/CBSE), do not continue to study class XI and XII in the same board (ISC/CBSE 12th), hence admissions are based on cut offs that consider board aggregate and or entrance test results. Some students aspire to study specific courses in a specific school or college. In this situation, on what basis will admissions to class XI/PUC be done ? (as it is there is not much transparency in the system, this will make it even more mysterious/shady). Solutions like consistent performance considering marks of class 8, 9 and 10, pre boards etc will not work as such things can easily be manipulated by parents, students and schools, unfortunate but very true.

*PS : daughter's ICSE exams have been put off with 4 more remaining and I know what parents and students are going through right now, not at all easy!

Last edited by NPV : 6th April 2020 at 20:55.
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Old 6th April 2020, 21:04   #3
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abhinav V View Post
Hi all,
I would like to dedicate this thread to all the students out there. Students who have worked hard day and night, who have had to give up their sports coaching classes to study more, who have been to tuition straight from school, and those who have given up on sleep.
They are aropriate, causing harm to anyone, please feel free to remove it.
Thanks.[/b]
I want to ask a question.

For whom does the Indian education system work?

Whom does it seek to serve?


Do we assume that everyone follows in the path of the urban elite? Does everyone go to some elite school in the Metros? And then wind up doing their undergrad in some private college (with significant endowment) in the U.S?

For a lot of people, class X exams are meant to be a big deal. To them class X signifies whether their child is ready for further education. For people belonging to lower economic strata, education is very much an experiment, every step is taken slowly, but surely.

You see, unlike the urban elite, individuals from a lower economic strata are NOT guaranteed to go into college.

Plus, keeping class X exams in place allows a lot of people to consider options like polytechnics / trade schools.
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Old 6th April 2020, 22:13   #4
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

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Originally Posted by FINTAIL View Post
Plus, keeping class X exams in place allows a lot of people to consider options like polytechnics / trade schools.
You've put it very well.

Absolutely - in our current system, the class X board exam results are a reference for life, heck some employers and jobs use that as criteria to evaluate a candidate.

If we look at the system holistically and implement changes for the future, I'm all for it, but not a radical ad-hoc/one off decision at the moment for this academic year alone. Some of these children, teachers and parents (to support the children) have put in tremendous amounts of time, effort and money and it would simply be unfair to all of them. It's not practical as there is no simple solution for admission criteria to the next class/course since seat intake is fixed and limited at each institution.

As things stand today, for those students who aim to pursue a specific course at a specific school or college via general merit rather than any special quota/management seats, the class X board exam performance means a lot.

Last edited by NPV : 6th April 2020 at 22:20.
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Old 6th April 2020, 22:25   #5
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Class 10 board exams are important for those pursuing undergrad in colleges in US
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Old 6th April 2020, 23:13   #6
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abhinav V View Post
Are exams really necessary?
Don't we need a change?
Shouldn't our education system consider getting a revamp?
Exams are absolutely necessary - how else would one test the understanding? Would I live in a house designed and built by engineers who were just gifted their degrees? Of course not.

With few exceptions, exams/tests bring out the competence of individuals. Competence is also seen as a habit not an act. [In line with the quote ascribed to Aristotle - "Excellence is a habit, not an act"]

That we need a change has long been discussed and almost everyone agrees that education system needs a revamp. While that work remains in progress, what you and I can do is to be keenly involved in our kids' education to ensure various shortcomings of formal education are addressed at home or alternate places.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Abhinav V View Post
To be honest, apart from getting admission into a college for 11th std, the only time my 10th marks card helped me was when applying for Learner's license at RTO so far.
Anecdote - One person in the neighborhood wanted to prepare for CAT. But he had some issues with both Math and English. I worked with him for an year and he finally got a decent score in CAT (99.X or so). Few universities still rejected him because his 10th and 12th scores were on the lower side!

The 10th grade (and 12th grade etc) do matter in our education system. Every place there is an exam to be given, in my opinion, everyone should aspire for the highest scores and work tension free towards that!

Aside: I don't know why people use the phrase "to be honest". Any earnest person has no other alternative!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Abhinav V View Post
Similarly, whatever was taught during my engineering days was of no use to me because I chose to not pursue my career further in engineering like M.S or M.Tech.
There are multiple dimensions to ones education in how it opens up ones own mind/intellect. At the very least, it allows one to scientifically evaluate any problem at hand. It allows one to have a sense of commitment and professionalism to a task undertaken.

Not that these skills cannot be had otherwise. Just that the probability of acquiring such skills are higher through that education.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abhinav V View Post
When students are going to be happy if they are promoted further without any exams bothering them then let that be.
That's a great recipe for disasters - number of bridges and buildings collapsing would increase; number of patients dying with simplest of issues would increase, etc etc.
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Old 7th April 2020, 05:57   #7
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

This is where continuous assessment throughout the school year would help.

It's archaic to think that one final exam to be the determining factor for success or failure.
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Old 7th April 2020, 07:44   #8
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Allow me to provide some perspective.

For a 8 year span in the last decade, the class 10 boards were indeed optional. So surely they had a reason to bring it back. In fact, I was in class 10 one of those 8 years, and like most people I knew, I did not take it. Instead, we had an internal assessment (which was then certified by the CBSE, and could be used as a standard CBSE mark sheet-- a little unfair given that our school sets notoriously tough papers), which kind of serves the same purpose anyway. But, many schools may not have the resources (or the will) to conduct good internal exams (or to conduct them at all), so the end of the class 10 boards supposedly led to falling academic standards, per the HRD minister at the time, as he was justifying his intention to bring the 10th boards back.

Actually, I think this is somewhat backwards reasoning. If students are not studying when you're not holding a gun to their head, there is something wrong with the education system. Putting the gun back to their head is not going to fix that problem.

But the truth is, standardised exams are still a very important tool in a student's hands. They give you a target to study for, they allow you to assess your own strengths and weaknesses, and they definitely indicate to you whether or not you are ready for the next phase of your education. Plus, some competition, as long as it does not get toxic, is crucial to one's education. And, since class 10 students usually take up all the basic subjects, it is a chance to figure out what stream of studies you would like to dedicate the rest of your life to, or to show your parents that the stream they have bestowed upon you is not the one for you. (I know many parents would not take heed to that, but I think these days parents are getting more and more progressive, at least in this regard).

I think it's not very fair to hold a student's class 10 performance against them in a later phase of life, though. Anecdotally: Lord knows I detested studying at that time. While my mark would be considered ok even in the boards (certainly so in my school where the examinations were set to be quite difficult), I definitely could have done way better. I simply did not have the maturity at age 14-15 to not waste my time having fun. By contrast, I was in the top bracket in the 12th boards. If I submit both those documents, obviously my 12th record would take precedent, but I think I would be hampered by the 10th one.

So, I think the best course of action would be to reform the education that students are receiving and let the boards stay (perhaps conduct it once per term instead of one all-or-nothing exam). And please don't bother with the 10th marks later! (unless that is the education level of an individual). I think such measures would help transform the boards from the aforementioned weapon against the students to the aforementioned tool in their hands.

Last edited by BlackPearl : 7th April 2020 at 20:55. Reason: Edited as requested. Thanks.
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Old 7th April 2020, 13:14   #9
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Quote:
Exams are absolutely necessary - how else would one test the understanding? Would I live in a house designed and built by engineers who were just gifted their degrees? Of course not.

With few exceptions, exams/tests bring out the competence of individuals. Competence is also seen as a habit not an act. [In line with the quote ascribed to Aristotle - "Excellence is a habit, not an act"]
These few lines are enough to convince the students that exams are necessary to distinguish the learned from the ignorant.
This also is convincing enough for students to change the perception they had towards exams.
Instead of focusing more on the brighter side than being averse to exams, students will be able to deal with their exams without breaking a sweat.

Last edited by Abhinav V : 7th April 2020 at 13:18.
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Old 9th April 2020, 14:14   #10
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Exams are very much necessary. They serve as an standardized metric to gauge the relative intellect of a student.
The marks of 10th exams also have some weightage attached to them in management exams and admission to foreign universities for higher education (MS/PhD)
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Old 9th April 2020, 15:21   #11
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Why try to fix something that's not broken? I am sure this thread, like many other threads of late, is a result of the boredom caused by Covid19.

What next? Are 12th exams necessary? Are engineering exams necessary? Are CGPAs necessary?

Want to bring to OPs notice that this Corona situation is a one off event. We will not have it every year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abhinav V View Post
When students are going to be happy if they are promoted further without any exams bothering them then let that be.
I see many doctors in my network between ages 30 to 40 who are undergoing advanced training in super speciality areas like Hepato Pancreato Biliary Surgery, Surgical Oncology, Pediatric Neurology, Critical Care Medicine etc very tensed about clearing their exams. All merit students all their life, secured government seats in medicine throughout and less than 100 All India Ranks to pursue super speciality courses.

Would you like to get treated or operated upon by someone who passed his exams or failed his exams?

Quote:
"Destroying any nation does not require the use of atomic bombs or the use of long-range missiles. It only requires lowering the quality of education and allowing cheating in the examinations by students”.

If you think of this it true as patients die at the hands of such doctors, buildings collapse at the hands of such engineers.

Accountants and economists lose your money because they do not know what they are doing.

Justice is lost at the hands of such judges.

“The collapse of education is the collapse of the nation”

Last edited by bharatbits : 9th April 2020 at 15:46.
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Old 9th April 2020, 16:11   #12
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

In its current format most of the exams work for those who can ace an exam, I do not think that is an indication of a student`s ability to apply what they have learned in life afterwards.

The ones who are able to apply in real life what they have learned (not necessarily from books or school), nothing can stop them. They are going to be successful no matter what you throw at them.

I tell my daughter that i`m not worried about her marks at all, just make sure you pass the exams. I do not want her to think that her getting good marks is the only way to success in life - that is just wrong!
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Old 9th April 2020, 16:22   #13
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Default Re: Are 10th exams necessary?

Perhaps a more pertinent question would be 'Is quota necessary?'. Exams most certainly sorts the candidates based upon their IQ levels. Higher IQ students should ideally get higher studies option or a mentally demanding job, based upon how much their IQ can handle, and progressively lower IQ candidates get job that do not put too much requirement on their IQ's. Quota reverses this and places lower IQ students into higher IQ requirement studies and jobs. Result, poor performance in studies & jobs, making the whole country becomes either OBC, SC or an ST.
And all this above doesn't mean to say that the reserved people have any lower IQ than their general buddies. The percentage must be the same in both groups, you just need exams to sort them. Just make education free and increase salary by 1.5 for the SC, ST & OBC as against the general ones. But, please don't reserve seats in education and jobs. You are making the whole country backward.
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Old 9th April 2020, 19:49   #14
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Perhaps a more pertinent question would be 'Is quota necessary?'. Just make education free and increase salary by 1.5 for the SC, ST & OBC as against the general ones. But, please don't reserve seats in education and jobs. You are making the whole country backward.
There is no problem in having quota to the extent prescribed by the honourable Supreme court ie maximum 50 percent. The basic tenet of quota is adequate representation for all sectons. It is not a poverty alleviation programme. How can OBC, SC and ST be given higher salary for doing the same job-unconstitutional and illegal. Also certain high skilled areas like DEFENCE, Science and technology, have been excluded from quota systems.
But there is definitely a need for representation for underrepresented classes in the bureaucracy.
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Old 9th April 2020, 20:31   #15
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I'm saying this as a student: I just gave my 12th Boards this year, which thankfully got finished before the pandemic led to postponement of exams ( I am a humanities student). The thing is, I struggled with Maths & Science throughout 9th and 10th grade, so I did not do exceptionally well in either. However, taking Humanities with Psychology & Economics was the best academic decision I have taken, I was in a great place, I was studying subjects that I was confident of performing well in. To be honest, 10th grade examinations should not really count, considering the fact that you may be studying subjects that you may not have an interest in, while in 12th you have a greater preference, so while 10th examinations should be undertaken, they shouldn't affect us, while 12th examinations should play a significant role, for example in US undergraduate admissions (though technically that isn't possible). I can tell you this, for a person who did not have the aptitude or interest to study Maths & Science, studying those subjects was an ordeal for me (not an exaggeration).
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