Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Not your average brick in the wall

I recently came across my old marksheet from my 10th standard CBSE board exams.

The year was 1997, and I can never forget missing out on topping in English in my entire school batch by one. measly. point. I could've got a medal and a certificate and my name in my school's records, but I didn't!


It's 2009 and turns out, I'm the author of two English books. Take that, subjective testing; we don't need no dark sarcasm in the classroom.

Okay, I'm just being dramatic. School was fun but impending board exams were soul-shattering. But goes to show, eh? The value of education cannot be stressed enough, but you are much more than your transcript should you choose to be.


ravi said...

i could see a positional grade in the last column. So it means, CBSE used to give grades even in 1997. So whats the big difference that they going to make ??

Khadija Ejaz said...

Hm I'm not sure about the details of the education reform, but I do know that in the grade-based American education system, grades are assigned on a curve, so an A doesn't always mean you scored 90+. It's more like a percentile and better reflects your performance with respect to your peers. The grades we used to get in CBSE didn't mean anything except that you made it into the 10-point bracket, and God help you if you got a lower grade because of half a mark even if most people did badly on the test. Also, at the end of the day in a grade-based system, it doesn't matter if you scored an 81 or an 89, all that people will see on your marksheet is that you got a B (on a test with a normal curve). Some might break it down into B-, B, and B+, but it's still a B and that's all that ends up on your transcript. In a point-based system like CBSE, everyone might've done badly on a test and you might've scored the highest at, say, 65. In a grade-based system, you'd get an A, but in India, you'd get third-division (a C) which will follow you around for the rest of your life even though technically you scored the highest. I think that's one of the differences between a grade-based and points-based system.