In the education system, is assessment through formal written examination still valid?

Whether the assessment of an individual via a written exam is not enough to test all skills of an individual is an ongoing debate for decades for academicians and educationist.

Relying on what is written in an exam cannot prove that the candidate understands everything that is taught. Further, candidates with English as not their first language often struggle with these exams. Moreover, students in India are often taught to memorize answers without understanding. Such practice can gain students high marks but very less understanding. Thus, only a written assignment is not enough to assess knowledge.

Nevertheless, written exams are essential. It is an excellent indicator to judge if the candidate has read thoroughly and understood. Further, the usage of examples from real-life situations or remembering it from somewhere read indicates his analyses and application.

Fifteen years in the millennium and the employer’s expectation from prospective employees has risen drastically. They prefer candidates who can multi-task and can work in a team. Thus schools and universities are now adopting other methods of assessment such as group coursework, presentation and experiments amongst others. Such activities will hone their skills in teamwork but improve their communication skills and help in increasing confidence. Further, having to submit these assignments at different times will teach them time management and aligning their priorities.

In conclusion, I believe written examinations are only valid when clubbed with other methods of assessments.