One of the biggest challenge I’ve face so far from studying in KMU, is the testing system. I ain’t refering to the "Mid-term" week that we have all the freetime in the world to prepare; I love that. What bothers me constantly is the way the profs construct their tests.
It could be just me, or my faculty, but it’s been irritating. I’ve always been taught and believed (even before I left Taiwan) that studying ain’t meant for tests. Maybe that’s why I’ve always had a little more fun than my peers. However, that could also be one of the reasons that I couldn’t climb all that high anymore. I really dislike the way professors contruct their exams without carefully ensuring that the questions are desgined to review the "overall" understanding of the subject. I’m talking about "big picture," "whole idea," "logical sense," and NOT "THIS statement," "specific ANSWER," "the ones who study hard would get it."
The medical field is dealing with physiologic changes before, during, and after a certain stimulation/stress/therapy. The theories behind the concets cannot predict 100% of the outcome. It is essential for a professor to expand the knowledge into the open imagination, and couples them with real life. While most of them are or at least trying to do that, the tests are still as dull as ever. Why can’t the test be more dimensional? When we deal with real life, we try to approach and consider the mechanisms from many aspects in order to simulate the situation in our head, and then we attack it. Why can’t we have that in our examinations? Isn’t that the best way to evaluate a student?
What is the good of testing students on materials that can be found within seconds of the handout or textbook? Yes, having an idea of the statistics could become handy at times when textbook or handout are not at present, yet who is going to have a clear idea about the data 2 weeks away from the test? Then what is the point of examing on materials that last no longer than 2 weeks for the student? Does that make one a better student by memorizing better than the others? Or, more specifically, does that mean a student has a better understanding of the concept when he/she spends more time memorizing the statistics/truth that could be found easily in real life?
Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to evaluate a student in a way to determine the ones masters the concepts, applications, or further studies the most ? Let the students elaborate! The tests that allow lazy student to "cram" and "memorize" and therefore "ace" it shall be dispised. A test like that not only promte the student to shortcuting, but also discourage the truth-seeking ones to spend the efforts. It should be banned! The Professor whoever comes up with tests like that should be exemplified!
Medical Students are meant to be creative, leave those input/output stuff to the computers. We are trying to make scientific brains, not geeks.