Monday, November 15, 2010

What students are being churned out by our education system?

I find it very interesting to read this quote from a person in NTU:

When I interact with Swedish companies here, they tell me they employ Singaporeans at a more basic level because they are good at carrying out what they are instructed to do. But for higher-level positions, they hire people from Scandinavia because they are more trained to run projects.

Is this true? I recall hearing certain "complaints". The gist is as follows:
  1. The PSLE question is not fair. It is not being taught.
  2. Why do we need tuition in order for our students to score?
  3. What did the lecturer say? Is that English?

Looking at what I've heard, and what this person has said in NTU, it seems like what he said may be true. Ranking of schools is one thing, but how students turn out should depend largely on the teacher, and not how many 10 year series the student has done or which tuition centre that the person has attended.

If this is the case, why should we go to schools? We might as well just go to tuition centres and take our exams as private students.

Furthermore, I always think that exams are a waste of time. People say that exams are a way of testing if the student understood the concepts of what was being taught. So will the students know the correct answers to those exam questions? Will someone explain why those answers were chosen? Or in the end do we just get a grade point average or a grade?

Back to the point in contention. Are we only good at carrying out what we are instructed to do? There are people with good grades that are able to think out of the box but you may also want to look for people beyond the grades that you see on that piece of paper. You may be surprised.


Anonymous said...

The education system is liken to a manufacturing plant. The system is primality designed to make workers out of people. And all workers have a common thread of thinking and that is to conform to a hierarchical order.
That is why singaporeans are good at carrying out instructions. Truth is, it is mandatory for one's survival in such an environment.

Recently, I came to a conclusion that our higher institution trained people for the workforce rather than educating them to be great human beings.

Anonymous said...

correction..primarily designed to make workers out of people.

Anonymous said...

In the whole grand scheme of things, this "factory mode" is precisely what PAP needs to keep them in power: people trained to listen to what the govt tells them and obey accordingly.
If people are taught to think out of the box, they will see all the flaws in the system and start entertaining the idea of change --- which means booting out PAP.

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