As students we all have been challenged to do our best. Throughout our lives we have been labeled with our grades; in high school, the ones with low grades were left alone in misery, while the ones with higher grades were praised as the leaders of this horse race. Then, the question that comes into mind is: is it right to categorize students, does grading contribute to educationa?
It is assumed and stated in the philosophy of the current educational system that grading encourages learning and without it students would not study. That is far from being true and also expresses another flaw of our education system. The system is based on fear: the basic motive for students to study is fear of low grades. Furthermore, because the grades are the main criteria for passing courses, students do not study: they just develop methods of cheating. Thus, without learning the subject, they keep passing.
Since grades received in exams are more important than learning the subject matter, all students have to do to pass their courses is memorize how a specific problem is solved. Without knowing why such a method is used, students cannot apply their ability to solve the problem to daily life. However, they pass exams without learning why, how or what of the matter.
Another disadvantage of grading is that grades of a student are not updated. That means the grades of a student for the first year of school will still be valid in the last year, whether his knowledge about the subject has improved or deteriorated. Considering all the factors that affect a student’s exams and marks, even a small incident may have a great impact in the long run.
Apart from these problems, which can be virtually solved by optimizing and improving the grading system, the most important defect of the system cannot be repaired without changing the whole system. The grading system causes inequalities, superior-inferior relations, classifications and even conflicts. It may be maintained that societies of the modern world are structured on these basic principles, but the fact that something exists does not justify it. Moreover, the people grown up in such an education system will not be able to see the other side of the walls, or will be afraid even to take a glimpse.
To sum up, grading students is not a good practice and should be abolished. It is clear that education, especially education during childhood, has a great effect on one’s life. And if you bring the children up in conditions of conflict and competition, they will look for conflicts in the future too.