A in Exams, F in Life

Tomorrow I’ll be heading back to my hometown to attend a talk which will be given by former students of my high school. Though the atmosphere wasn’t as lively as before, nonetheless this is a gathering of old friends.

Today, schools will be posting out the national high school examination results and as usual, I’ll be expecting a lot from my school. And then there were today’s newspaper. Father and son forge national secondary level examination, with a total of 24 distinction (A1). Do you see the problem here? You must be wondering, why did he fake those results, can’t he work hard to achieve them, just like anyone else? However, this is not the problem but…

Why forge 21As when you could have fake 11?

See the trend here? Even bad eggs wants a piece of the action and the government and the media are not helping to resolve this unhealthy craze of attain higher academic status. For those international viewers, let me break down the Malaysia education system:

We have the national secondary level examination (SPM) and the national high school examination (STPM). Both are internationally credited and at few years back, STPM was graded as the third most hardest examination worldwide. Now, I generally don’t have a problem with the STPM system, however, it was the latter that pose more trouble to the adolescences. The ministry reports, there is over 100 subjects that you could choose from but the is a maximum amount of 21 subjects that you can sit for. Now, the problem arises when there is no prerequisites and co requisites assigned to these subjects. Example, a science student needs to take physics, chemistry and biology as core subjects, but the candidate could also attempt an additional general science. What good is general science when you are already taking advanced science modules?

This gets worse. As stiff competition to enter renowned universities around the world, its best to garnish and decorate certificate as much distinctions as you can. Therefore, students often have a misconception that the more subjects I’ve taken, the higher chance I’ll get admitted into the university, but thats not the case for most universities. Some require additional examination like SAT, others are seeking for all rounders.

This year the government have make an effort to discourage students to follow the fad however, its only to a nano scale. There will be no top student this year but unofficially belongs to Jie Ming. Its a feat but she managed to do so, but my question is what does basic economy, commerce and accounts have to do with medicine studies? Maybe jack of all trades, master of none? When I attended my first tutorial for electrical systems module, the professor briefly told us about the life on an engineer. The rule of thumb for all engineers are to remember how to use 4 mathematical operations: add, subtract, multiply and divide; any other things that you have learn for the past four years can be thrown to the d-bin.

I don’t despise people for having great achievement nor do I want to boast myself ’cause I don’t have the anything to, but when aiming for being the best must also come with passion and interest and not mere showoff. Rather than having 21A’s, why not attempt at international competition or enter national quizzes or sorts? Besides, those are the things that university selection committees wants to see, not 10+ useless subjects that aren’t correlated.

Luckily, our national high school examination is still on par with international pre-U examination such as Cambridge A-Levels. 34 students obtained 5As and 414 achieved 4As for STPM. The normal load is 4 subjects. Now, if there a person who can have 5 failed subjects, jackpot… Who would like to try?

Get a life.


One Response

  1. Very interestin dude…. no doubt .. u can write well…

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