Assessments at School, Work and Everywhere

When I finished my formal education, the one thing that had become part of my life till then was "exams". Suddenly, without any further "exams" in sight, I felt that now I had the power to achieve anything I wanted in this world. I basically didn't have to perform against a set benchmark. But was I so wrong! In the coming decade or two of my career, I have been through innumerable "exams" (read appraisals). I wonder if there is any time in the living period of a person when there are no assessments or exams. Atleast for now, your family members do not make you go through a formal assessment!

Back in school life, everything was about the marks and percentages. Schools have changed a lot since then and now do continuous assessment in a "non threatning" manner :) to the extent that CBSE has come out with a very well written whitepaper on why it is important to have a continuous and comprehensive evaluation. Maybe sometime in future schools will only do assessments and leave the teaching to be done at home :).

Anyway, the fact of the matter is that, we now have a huge opportunity of create an assessment software so that history of past performance can be maintained. Hundreds of startups are building cutting edge school assessment software. Well, atleast it is great news that google is now allowing past history to be forgotten.... hmmm.  As humans we are now making sure that we are performing as expected (at school, work) against standard benchmarks and trying to improve all the time.

The point of this blog is to provoke some thought on how far and how comprehensively we want to assess children to ensure that they are achieving knowledge "as per expectations". As the CBSE whitepaper mentions that assessents also helps in knowing the effectiveness of teaching methods. Great! Lets also assess how assessments are performing... so on and so forth. Maybe it okay to not assess all the time. Maybe it's okay to perform to your own benchmark. Well.... Maybe.



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