November 14, 2011

Educating the educational system

Why do I have to go for studies? Of course, I have to earn a job and live a luxurious peaceful life(Why did I use the word luxurious here? It is getting uncomfortable). I do not know the exact answer for this question, but if I ask the question to people around me, I am pretty sure that the answers will include 'money' ,'to marry', 'I don't know' etc. I couldn't say that I've had the complete knowledge of what I was going to learn before I choose a course. But if I had the opportunity to rewind my life, I would choose different for sure. Sometimes, I feel that a lot of people, who have different skills and talents, are pointed to the wrong direction. What is the real need of a university? They will analyze the student with their measurement and grade them into different categories. I'm not talking about the entire world, I'm just talking about Indian educational system. Recently, I came to see a report about India's educational behavior over the internet. It says that India's 'talent pool' is inefficiently used and it also recommends that Indians should increase the opportunity for research and development. I think, a lot of Indians are at a 'survival strategy' in the field of education. Somehow, our educational system does have a little discipline, but lacks some sort of passion in both student and implementer.

I have a lot to write when it comes to this subject and everything I am planning to write is extracted from my own experience. What is the most important aim of getting educated? It does have something to do with gaining knowledge, doesn't it? I'm learning about computers now and quite recently, I happened to chat with a 'haven't met' friend, who is a student in the same stream. I happened to talk about computers and she said something like this "I've been hearing the same 'technical stuffs' for the last 2 years and I hate to talk about it now". I still couldn't understand the logic behind such an attitude. But, I believe that she is one of a lot of victims, who has been forced to be pointed to the wrong direction(If you can't lend your ears, how can I expect that you are actually lending your mind? and unfortunately, this is not a unique incident and learning is not always done with 'mind', i guess). What is learning? memory test? I hope not. But, I am ready to confess that I had a habit of 'use and throw' learning(a.k.a exam preparations). I've been spending almost 6 hours per day for 6 months for learning and it doesn't make much sense if I have to prepare again to write an exam about the things I've been learning for the last 6 months. If you ask me about the subject after a few hours, I wouldn't be able to answer. My learning method was more like memorizing than learning itself. The mistake is that it really counts to my academics even though I may not be good at it after the exams. Let the exams be spontaneous and unprepared!! 

There is a lot of differences between learning and knowledge. When I was in school, there was an English teacher, who taught me English grammar. I am still pathetic at handling English grammar, but I  still remember the things she had told about advertisement of Mc Donalds ( There was a grammatical error in 'I'm loving it'). I remember a lot of things like this, though I do not remember much things I had learned for exams there.  Learning loses it's effect when we consider it as learning. Recently, I happened to read my text book as a part of preparation for examination. Later, I happened to know that most of the things I've learned were out-of-syllabus. At present, I think I remember those 'out-of-syllabus' things better than the things I learned in syllabus. Knowledge will never get wasted. I might not be the best scorer, but those out-of-syllabus things are really important to me. I'm a better tech geek than the person who doubts whether he is a geek or not, but I am never confident enough to call myself a geek. I'm curious to read technology news. No, let me put it this way "I'm curious enough to google about technological doubts and facts" and I've spend a lot of time in front of a computer which made others call me a geek. Somehow, it resembles to my passion though. If someone asks me about those tech stuffs, I always have an opinion (or at least a distraction). 

This is how it works!! If you learn to 'learn', it will be a lot easier for you to gain a decent knowledge through education and if not, I wouldn't say that you will never be successful, but there is a difference. I am not sure whether I am at a position to say that I am learning the things I really wanted to learn, but I believe that I've felt a little easier than a few people to learn the subject I am learning. A time may come when I realize the true passion of my life and starts a shop to sell philosophies!! In the present society, there is a huge difference between a man who have a few alphabets hanging with his name and the man who doesn't have any alphabets hanging with his name. But, it could have been better if you choose those alphabets wisely. Do not compare them with others as it is possible to gain knowledge without the support of any universities(I think, it works better than having a university to back you up). What makes you different is the things you know beyond the syllabus and to gain such a knowledge, passion is important. If you believe that those out-of-syllabus things are a waste of time, it is better to find a field you are best suited to. 

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” 
-Albert Einstein
Yes, I am a fish and I wouldn't say that I am dominating in the water, but it is much easier to crawl on the ground than to climb on trees.

Raghu