The spontaneous reactions from students across the country following the Integrated Science paper of the West African Examination Council which took place yesterday, should give us a reason to reflect.
We ought to reflect on whether we are doing the right things in developing the child.
The day I read in the news about a governmental decision to supply final year students with past questions, I knew we were on the path of further worsening the lack of reading culture that is deep seated in our students, especially at the pre-tertiary level.
Anybody with little knowledge in child psychology, knows that making available past questions covering a particular period to learners who are preparing for final exams is very suggestive that questions are likely to repeat from there, especially if it’s coming from the “government.”
I spoke against such a policy that’s if it’s a policy but that didn’t change anything. I was not happy because, it did not make sense. It didn’t because these past questions are “produced” in the schools after every final exams and are available in the libraries of these schools to complement student’s research.
Why should the managers of our education settle on providing past questions to students among the plethora of challenges affecting effective and efficient teaching and learning in our schools today? That’s intriguing right?
So it is not surprising seeing the kind of videos that are emerging from the various campuses of our senior high schools. The students feel deceived justifiable or unjustifiable as it may be depending on what your appreciation is.
The times that we’re in, the world is moving away from reproduction of knowledge to demonstration of understanding and using same to solve societal problems.
It is antiquated and anachronistic to seek to have a population of excellent certificate holders and yet hire external human resource to come solve our problems for us.
What we should be focusing on is how to remove from our curriculum the concept of asking students in a final exams to name the parts of a cockroach, identify a tuber, and the like.
That’s why I welcome the curriculum review that has began at basic level. Let’s quickly introduce the same at the high school level and link it to industry.
Let’s stop pampering our students with past questions and resource the schools to inculcate the habit of research in our students in order to minimise abstract learning. That will help us in the years to come.
By :E. Jerry Gliff