I competed in the rat race of +2 exams in the year 2003. During that time there was another rat race termed TNPCEE which stands for Tamil Nadu Professional Courses Entrance Examinations. A cut-off mark is calculated by normalising the scores you obtain in your +2 exams and TNPCEE exams.
The two ranking system before 2006
In those days, Education Department of Tamil Nadu used to announce two set of rankings
* Names & Marks of the students who have occupied first three ranks. Sometimes these positions are shared by multiple candidates. On a lighter note whenever there is a topic surrounding this issue, I remember the scene from the movie Gilli.
* Rankings based on normalisation list (The combination of +2 marks and the TNPCEE marks). Though the first three ranks are not announced, you can find your ranking in your caste quota by logging into their website. I vividly remember that I ranked 4000th position in Engineering cut off list. I didn’t even bother to check my position on the medical list.
The Government decided to scrap the TNPCEE in the year 2006, a year which I can remember because my brother belongs to the last batch of students who had appeared for TNPCEE. Students were quite anxious, and there was contradictory information regarding the proceedings of the exam. And finally, the exam was conducted.
Remember while +2 exams have a mixture of descriptive and multiple choice questions, TNPCEE was a complete MCQ exam. The fact that a student answers the exam in OCR sheets added to the anxiety levels. Many training centres milked money training students for TNPCEE. When the Government body decided to go away with the devil, it shattered the market surrounding the TNPCEE training centres.
Tamil Nadu Government abolishes the ranking system for +2 students
Eleven years later the Education Department of Tamil Nadu has decided to scrap another crown jewel of Education Business – The announcement of first three ranks in +2 exams. The implications of this decision can only be felt or measured during the next year exams, definitely not this year.
Whether the businesses belonging to education mafia, continue their existing strategies or fine tune it? We are sure to know of it in the coming days.
The students who appear for +2 exams would fall into these three categories
* Students who are exceptional learners and aim for professional courses
* Students who are not exceptional learners, but work hard and aim for the top rankings and professional courses
* Students who are happy to cross the 55% line, and join a college
I am sure that third category will not be affected by any announcement whatsoever. They are quite happy to clear the exams and get into a college. While they might have slim chances of getting into Engineering/Medicine, they would secure a berth in other courses for sure.
The first category may or may not be affected by this announcement depending upon the potential of the student. For me, it is quite hard to understand their predicament.
Although I am not a professional psychologist who have dealt with emotions, I am confident that the second category would be the most affected. I would apply the “Carrot & the Stick” principle here. The top ranking is the carrot, and the stick is your the hard work and sacrifice.
The Government has removed the carrot and thereby would render the stick useless. Students might reduce the intensity of their workout. Before the announcement, even if the students fail to secure the coveted top position, they end up in entering into a reputed Engineering college through Single Window System. (I am not talking about Medicine here, as the introduction of NEET has complicated issues). With the announcement, students might become complacent.
I am confident in writing about the second category because I used to belong to it.
Can we buy the stress-related argument of the Government?
Honestly, yes! In spite of the fact that there might be the lack of motivation, there would also be an environment where there would be less stress, anxiety and peer pressure.
It would be fascinating to watch how things would unfold in the days to come.
For the year 2017, it would be a disappointment for some and a great relief for many. The madness surrounding the rat race would cool down a little and sanity would prevail.
And I would like to recollect a scene from the critically acclaimed movie – Appa where a father is furious that his son lost 100% by a margin of few marks.
You can also read my post on courses for +2 failed students
I welcome you to share your +2 results experience in the comment section below.