Classes become virtual as pandemic sets in: The Impact?

Date:

In the view of COVID-19, you’ve been promoted to the next class. Zoom link for your classes beginning the year 2020-2021 will be provided to your parents. Please join sharp at 8 am (IST) starting Monday. 

Thousands of students woke up to similar messages in the view of the pandemic that ghosted our lives with fear starting March 2020. 

In a more general sense about India, Students up to class 8th were promoted without a final examination.  

It’s been a year since then, yet COVID is still very much part of a student’s life, as are online classes.

The Education System has attempted to adapt and evolve to fit itself in a digital structure in a country where only half of its population is exposed to internet access.

This is one of the harsh realities of The Indian Education System that is not intended to critique but exposed by the pandemic screaming correction before moving forward. 

Let’s look closely. 

Here’s what an academic year for an ICSE student looks like:  

Students carry forward on their first day the past performance, thereby deciding to improve, stay neutral, or things go downhill for them as the year progresses if the material seems hard nut to crack.

Interestingly, the process remains similar: we study, write a short test, say once in two months before semifinals come in, followed by the same cycle leading up to the final examination.

Result: Promotion to the next class, having passed a certain threshold off percentage. 

The minute details the system doesn’t take into consideration is the hidden mindset behind the learning. 

Are students mugging up to clear exams and tests, or is the information making away in their mind with a practical outlook?

With the pandemic added in the mix as online classes set in, teachers and students face hurdles not only in acquiring information but rather a correct parameter when it comes to testing the viability of knowledge.

Are MCQs enough to test their understanding? Should Viva be apart? Do written exams hold more weight?

Multiple schools and universities that had online exams for students followed a different mix of the above in their way to test their knowledge while promoting them to the next level. 

One particular format that caught the eye that seemed more adaptive during the pandemic- IIT GOA.  

IIT GOA came up with a unique evaluation method wherein students prepared a question based on the material.

The quality of questions organised students intend to answer presents itself as a near-perfect evaluation method suited to test the understanding both theoretically and in the applicative sense.

The other side of the coin: Mental Health 

Classes become virtual as pandemic sets in: THE IMPACT?
Image Source: Twitter

Discussing Mental health seems to be a stigma that’s slowly broken into. It is attempting to be present in our minds, habits and actions on a deeper level instead of the skin-deep level it limited itself to. 

As physical human contact becomes minimal, digital screens seemingly replace books and blackboards- mental and physical health issues coupled with restlessness come alive.

With peers no longer present physically and minimal outdoor activities- academic interest, motivation to perform better slowly seems to fade away.

Experts believe that about 70 per cent of students are more likely to require counselling and cognitive therapy to cope with the stressed environment and negativity that slowly sets in. 

It’s imperative to make way for the mental health of our children in mind through a sense of effective communication, allowing them room to grow and emotions to bloom expressively. 

Guruksha Gurnani
Guruksha Gurnani
An economics graduate amidst pandemic still whining about the farewell that didn’t take place. Unfinished letters, manuscripts, and poems adorn my library. Writing isn’t just a skill, it’s a safe haven after an exhausting day at work. This is home.

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