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Coaching results stress among students preparing for entrance examinations-UNESCO study

Dr.T.P.Sethumadhavan

 Recent findings of UNESCO reveal that students preparing for competitive examinations are undergoing severe stress. This results in anxiety disorders and mental stress. They find it very difficult to adjust with school and coaching timings and resultant stress. Moreover stress related disorders are increasing at an alarming rate. Recent statistics reveal that suicide rates among students preparing for entrance examinations after Plus2 and professional colleges are on the rise. During 2015, 5762s suicides were reported in India from the above category. Moreover road accidents among students are also increasing. During 2016-17 150 engineering college student’s life were lost in Kerala due to road accidents. Kota in Rajasthan, the pioneering place for entrance coaching in the country reported highest incidences of suicide rates among students preparing for Joint engineering Entrance examinations. Says Dr.T.P.Sethumadhavan, Educational and Career Consultant.
United Nation’s Annual Global Education Monitoring Report 2016-17 by UNESCO reveals that Private tuition can increase student’s academic burden and stress. High-stakes tests and private tuitions have been denounced by UNESCO as harmful to students and the goals of education.
There is extensive evidence showing that high-stakes tests based on narrow performance measures can encourage efforts to 'game the system', negatively impacting on learning and disproportionately punishing the margin. The report also criticized the growing inequalities in higher education. In countries like India, "elite research universities received more public funds and often charged higher tuition and other fees.
Students entering in to higher education sector must select courses based on their interest, aptitude, attitude and goal. In many of the cases due to parent’s and peerpressure they compelled to take courses having not much interest or aptitude. This results in poor performance or withdrawal of courses during their study period. This results in mental distress and subsequent consequences. Students require emotional support from parents and counseling support from teachers. Environment, effort and direction are more important for increasing their curricular and co-curricular activities. But many campuses are not giving due attention to student counseling. It should be a continuous process. Anthropologically each student differ in his/her character. Parents, teachers, educational authorities and Government need to organize structured regular counseling sessions for the students so as to develop positive mindset among the stake holders. As far as India is concerned educational institutions are increasing in number. All are getting the opportunity to study. There are umpteen number of educational institutions of excellence exist in the country. But employability is getting reduced day by day. Employability among graduates in the country is less than 20 percent according to NASSCOM and ASSOCHAM findings. Only 17 percent of the students are working in the discipline in which they graduated. Need of the hour is to develop strategies for positive mindset among youths in the campus. This must address age related issues, over use of Social media, mobile, decision making before selecting courses for higher education, etc.

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