Exams have always frightened students, especially in their early years of education when they fail to understand their real purpose.
These exams provide students (and their moms) sleepless nights, fear, frustration, and even health problems like fever, headache, and loss of appetite. Now, the real question is, are exams necessary in schools?
Well, the question warrants some scientific thinking. In the early years of life, learning is something involuntary. In other words, in childhood, children learn by observing things around them at their own pace and volition, and their mind is significantly more receptive than that of adults. They do not often understand the purpose of subjugating them to strict discipline and making them memorize lengthy texts. Therefore, conducting exams at this stage only interferes in their otherwise independent and quick learning process, creating unnecessary pressure, and often hindering their progress.
Another serious reason is that in the early years of schooling, learning is greatly dependent on memorizing things, and not rational thinking. If this is the case, those formal exams in these early years are mere memory tests. Therefore, the students who clear the exams are the ones bestowed with good memory and the ones who lag behind are weak in memory. And, as you know, you don’t have much control over your memory, especially in childhood.
Another serious drawback of this exam system in schools is that it encourages cramming, as you know. If memorizing is the norm in the early years, students are encouraged to cram as a way to clear examinations. In fact, that is giving a wrong message to students that cramming is the best https://www.purdue.edu/gradschool/research/thesis/templates.html way to learn something when it is obviously not. Such students, when they reach colleges, are in danger of heavily depending on rote learning to clear examinations and understand facts instead of rational thinking, and you know what happens.
That means formal examinations are not necessary and even harmful in school education but the exam can serve a useful purpose in higher education. As one reaches university, the way of learning changes significantly. At this stage, the material is too large to learn by-heart and one tries to understand the concepts instead of memorizing it. At this stage, a formal examination can reveal as to how much a student managed to grasp the points discussed in the syllabus. Thus, it is evident that formal examinations are useful only in higher studies.
Now think about the complex preparation for examinations. Conducting a formal examination involves extensive preparation from the part of authorities, teachers, and students and there is the laborious task of evaluation and grading. The mere fact is that these all things are of no practical value when such examinations are held in schools.
Worsening the problem, examinations in the early years of schooling develop a poor attitude towards learning in students. They develop the feeling that it is more important to outperform others to gain the attention and appreciation of others, and a failure in an examination in the primary classes is the indication that one is good for nothing. Thus, exams should be restricted to university education.