Do or die exam system out of date

PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 January, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 11 January, 1999, 12:00am

It has been a tradition in Chinese culture that those candidates seeking to join the elite of the civil service, would have to sit examinations.

This tradition persists in Hong Kong. Students here are trained to strive for excellence through exams, so they can get to better schools and eventually find better jobs.

Most societies test and grade their students, but they employ different education systems.

Here in Hong Kong, pupils sit exams at the end of the school term and the results are crucial in determining how they will progress in the next school year.

At present, with everything depending on one exam, the students are put under intense pressure. At the end of the school year it's a case of do or die.

I would prefer a system which tests students more frequently through a system of continual assessment.

Over the year, pupils should do research reports and assignments and be assessed on how well they perform such tasks.

Young people today are faced with a vast array of information.

They have to be trained to be able to intelligently sift through that information.

Rote learning is only effective in the short term, enabling a student to pass an exam. We have to move with the times.



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