Sunday, April 18, 2010

87.IIT recipe for stress

Indian Institutes of Technology(IITs) are among the most prestigious institutes of learning in India. Every child who dreams of being an engineer wants to get into one of the IITs.The admission takes place through an entrance examination, called IITJEE, where lakhs of students compete for a few thousand seats.

This year, IITJEE took place on April 11.The outcry over the goof ups in the examination refuses to die down even a week later. There are complaints of wrong questions, questions out of the syllabus,very lengthy and difficult questions and serious printing mistakes, especially in the Hindi version of the papers. There are vociferous demands for holding the examination again.

There is little chance of such demands being met, as it would amount to admission of failure. It is strange that the best technology institute in the country cannot hold its most important examination properly. When eyes are fixed rather high, it is difficult to see small ground-level things like proof-reading.

This brings me to a bigger question. What do we want to achieve by setting the standards of IITJEE way above those of the Board examinations.There is hardly any time gap between these two examinations, but their levels are very different. A child is at a loss to understand how to strike a balance between the preparations for the two examinations. He faces this dilemma for years and pays through his nose to coaching institutes which promise to help him resolve it.

Quite often, the child does poorly in both IITJEE and Board examinations. He has to waste one whole year after doing his plus two before he can really take a good shot at IITJEE.

Why can't questions in IITJEE be set on the pattern of Board examinations? What is the intention? Is it to test the merit of the candidates or is it to overawe them?Why are we putting youngsters in a highly stressful and difficult situation? Why are we robbing an entire generation of the pleasures of learning?

Will someone find time to introspect and answer these questions?


Unknown said...

I can imagine the outcry for such blunders. The public have the right to know. Exams are always stressful, more so when places are limited.

Kavita said...

We do need to spruce up our education system ...i wonder sometimes if the exams are set up to skim out the best talents or to confuse them .