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Rice Boil Test: Assessment Simplified

Rice is a staple diet of people in many countries especially in Asia. It is cooked in a vessel with water filled twice the level of the rice. To know whether the rice is fully cooked, a spoon is dipped in the boiling rice and a few grains are checked for softness. 

Education isn't complete without evaluation and assessment. For decades, India followed the summative assessment where importance was given to annual examination marks. However, as part of education reforms, summative assessment was replaced with continuous comprehensive assessment which puts extra burden on the teachers and students. 

At the same time it generally tests the knowledge retention and not cognitive, thinking skills and competencies. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has introduced competency-based questions for board examinations which is one step further from the traditional modes of assessment but still short of a holistic assessment of the student.

Education cannot be considered to be holistic unless it leads to mindset development.  Indian education system whether at school or college level was never outcome based but input based.  Accreditation by various governmental bodies were given to schools and colleges based on infrastructure, student-teacher ratio, number of hours of study and not on the basis of the learning outcome achieved by a student. Therefore, it was not surprising that many students fared poorly in tests conducted by ASER (Annual Status of Education Report) and international assessments such as PISA.

With technological disruptions such as world wide web (www), rapid advances in edtech and now artificial intelligence causing disruptions in industry and workplaces, it is high time our learning systems transform to Education 4.0 in line with Industry 4.0 with a focus on skillset development and mindset development ushering in entrepreneurial education to solve the problems faced in family and society. Education is meaningless unless our students become critical thinkers, innovators, problem solvers and entrepreneurial minds. 

Lot of time, money and effort taken for evaluation and assessment can be simplified and make teachers facilitate the entry of GenZ into a VUCA world to face any challenges in life and workplace. Just as boiling rice is checked to know whether it is palatable by examining a few grains, evaluation and assessment may be simplified so that teachers can devote more time for the mindset development of the students. 

Pallikkutam is happy to welcome all stakeholders in making the transformation of education from mere knowledge accumulation to mindset development with simplified evaluation and assessments. 


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