Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Fairness in exam

Recently there is a hooha in the primary 6 Science examination in Singapore (PSLE). Some students sob while doing the paper with ‘difficult’ questions as complained by these students and their parents. For me, there is nothing much to worry about when there is a very difficult question in the examination paper, because probably most will lose the marks for the question. Similarly, there is not much to cheer about when there is a very easy question because almost all will score the full mark for that one. Thus, I suspect that the problem lies in the attitude that they believe and expect full marks if they have put in the sufficient amount of preparation. Thus, for those who have put in more than sufficient efforts and who believe that they are entitled to full marks if there is no fault from them during the examination, they probably have felt being cheated or the situation is very unfair to them.

Should the examination system be perfect with total fairness? I prefer not. Considering the education in school as the preparation process for students to survive in society, it should not differ from the actual world too much. The real world is not fair, surely not in perfect state. Although the school should provide a protected environment for students to experiment and explore and learn, it should not be too protected and over perfected such that students will find it quite tough when they eventually have to live in the outside world.

Friday, October 1, 2004

Read the product manual

Nowadays, almost all products come with some manuals, guides, explanations on how to use the product correctly and/or how the product functions. Even though many times we don’t look at them, most of us should agree that the correct way is to read them to understand the product better so that we can get the most out of it and thus increase its worth against the price we paid.

However, ironically, many people don’t bother to or even never ever have the idea to learn more about a product (try to figure out what is it by the time you finish reading this paragraph) that everyone uses and which is being used the most compared to any other product we buy. Furthermore, this product is very expensive, or actually, it is still un-buyable. Many of its parts are not replaceable. Even if it is replaceable, the supply source for parts is very rare and limited. Yet, some people even purposely use it in a known harmful way. Sigh…

So, what is this ‘product’? Have you any answers? If you have only one answer, then you might have thought of the same ‘product’ as me. The product is body. Haven’t we been using it for the longest time, all the time? Isn’t it the most precious product that we own? Aren’t there many who purposely cause harm to it in exchange for short-term fake benefits? Sigh, sigh, sigh …
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