Competitive Exams

Topics: Civil service, Competitive examination, Examination Pages: 2 (687 words) Published: December 30, 2012
Competitive examinations are used for two purposes. At school and college they give a stimulus to study by rewarding with repu¬tation, prizes, and scholarships, those who show that they have learned most. They are also used in the selection of officers for the military and civil services. Looking at them from an educa¬tional point of view, every one must allow that they have a wonderful effect in encouraging hard work. Many boys who, without the stimulus of competition, would refuse to take any interest in their lessons, pursue their studies with the greatest industry in the hope of surpassing their rivals. In this way they are induced to expend upon their work the energy which otherwise they would display only in their games. Only a few students love knowledge for her own sake. The majority seek knowledge as a means of success in life, or as a possession which will give them the pleasure of triumphing over their associates. Success in life is too distant an object to influence powerfully young schoolboys, so that in their case desire of the reputation to be gained in com¬petitive examinations is a much stronger motive. When they grow older and approach the time when they will have to make their own way in the world, the necessity of study as a preparation for success in life becomes more apparent; but, to the very last the prospect of success in competitive examinations is a great en¬couragement to hard study. Even when the student has no reason to expect that a high place in the list will be a recommendation to some appointment he wishes to obtain. Thus competitive examinations do good service in the encour¬agement of study. They are not, however, without their accom¬panying disadvantages. In some cases competition is such an excessively powerful stimulus that it leads to over-work and the ruin of the physical health of too ambitious students. There is also a serious danger of harm to the moral character. In a competitive examination the successful...
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