The article by Krishnan (2013) deliberates on the idea of students cramming during the exam times. Krishnan (2013) indicates that exam cramming should not be termed as learning because students do this purposefully to pass exams and within a short period they will forget what they have been taught. It is true that cramming has become part of the learning process in schools without the realization that memory and retention are the key learning ingredients. It seems like the educational system is programmed to acknowledge students who only pass exams. The only measure of a student's success or intelligence is through success in exams. Krishnan (2013) presentation that exam cramming is not learning is entirely right, but his conclusion on discouraging students from cramming is not a well-provided solution to this problem. The blame on students tendency to cram should not solely be placed on them but instead, blame the educational system. An educational system that is exam-oriented will never change the character of students cramming during the exam period.The idea of discouraging students from cramming is not the solution. An educational system that is only focused on exams does not take knowledge as a priority. The current education system is primarily focused on examination rather than concentrating on training students for the future and the reality of testing their knowledge. With this kind of educational system, students will only be forced to take exams and tests that show their retention powers but not their actual knowledge and capacity. For instance, doctors do not give services to those who need them most but rather those who can afford to pay for this services. The education system has transformed students to become professionally oriented, and they take exams for the same but not for them to gain knowledge. Even when we look at the universities, most of the facilities are available regarding infrastructure and competent faculty, but students lack the motivation to engage in research because everything is on examination and job orientation.
Krishnan (2013) submits that repetition is what improves learning retention which is not quite a convincing idea in enhancing students' knowledge. There is need to design an instructional strategy for each training course because what is done before training plays a significant role in transferring the learning to improved performance. While it may seem fair to bring out the focus of repetition, students will learn best if they can have a clear correlation between what they are learning and real life. A study carried by Kirkpatrick and Zang (2011) indicates exam-oriented education system result in students losing creativities and imaginations. Since the examination culture has been embraced as a crucial determinant of student's future, then the public has already accepted the exam-oriented model as the determinants of better future. The exam orientation education system distorts learning and motivation by stressing the importance of scores as measures and outcomes of student's abilities. This education system creates worry on students on their low performance, so they always make attempts to mitigate the risk of failing examination by either cramming or even cheating in exams. The pressure that the students have is on getting good grades in their exams making them study without thinking.
The education methods in schools according to Krishnan (2013) need to take into consideration the short-lived nature of memory. The education methods should focus more on deploying right systems that can test for ability and intelligence. The education methods should not start in schools but rather from the people who are responsible for regulating and making policies. When an education system deteriorates to the point that a culture of examination has substituted, it means that policymakers and regulators have failed to act in time to correct this anomaly. The idea is not just having this rules and regulation but rather implementing them. Government bodies have been unable to control institutions which is their most important priority. For the institutions that are promoting real learning, they should not be supported more by the government.The forte of Krishnan (2013) submission is that exam cramming is not learning because it is not all about passing the examination but rather a holistic education experience that imparts desired values, knowledge, practical skills and attitudes. The main purpose of education is to for it to produce an individual who respects human right laws and objectivity. Though this is the case, the solution for changing the culture of exam cramming is not about students about cramming according to Krishnan (2013) but rather designing and an education system that demands the need for students to learn. This education system needs to prepare students to make a positive contribution to the development of society and acquired attitudes of patriotism, nationalism, self-respect, adaptability, self-reliance, discipline and a sense of purpose.
In conclusion, an educational system that is only focused on exams does not take knowledge as a priority. Since exams are used to measure success, this culture allows students to engage in cramming for them passing the exams. It is true that cramming has become part of the learning process in schools, but the idea of changing students perspective will not work if the system of education still prevails. With this kind of educational system, students will only be forced to take exams and tests that show their retention powers but not their actual knowledge and capacity. The education methods should focus more on deploying right systems that can test for ability and intelligence. The government through policymakers and regulators need to step up and revolutionize the current education system culture.
Baker, E. L. (1989). Mandated tests: Educational reform or quality indicator? In B.R. Gifford (Ed.): Test policy and test performance: Education, language, and culture. Norwell, MA: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Hu, B., & West, A. (May 27, 2015). Exam-oriented education and implementation of education policy for migrant children in urban China. Educational Studies, 41, 3, 249-267.
Kirkpatrick, R., & Zang, Y. (December 01, 2011). The Negative Influences of Exam-Oriented Education on Chinese High School Students: Backwash from Classroom to Child. Language Testing in Asia, 1, 3, 1-10.
Krishnan, K, R. (2013), Exam cramming is not learning. Memory and Forgetting. Today, p16. Travelers. (2011). Examination Oriented Education, Love it or Hate it. Retrieved on 31st July 2011 from http:// web cache.googleuser.com/ search? =cache: yok6vhc
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