Admission Test: Why not in ‘Cluster System’?
The number of students seeking higher education in Bangladesh is increasing in a good rate every year. So the need for a better admission process is more necessary nowadays. But, still now the public universities are driven by money-making motives, they are running at the expense of student's interest. If this admission system continues, then the better higher education system will remain a distant dream, which we have been dreaming for a long time.
Earlier some seven years ago a decision of uniform admission test system was introduced for the public universities to reduce the trouble faced by students and guardians at the time of admission tests held separately in different parts of the country.
During this seven years only the country’s medical colleges have implemented this uniform examination system in which the students sit only for one test and are selected for the colleges as per their merit. This one-test system would save on fees and accommodation and transportation costs and other hassles of the admission seekers. But the public universities do not follow the system.
According to the ongoing admission process under public universities, the admission seekers are forced to sit for exams held across the country in a span of a few days to ensure their admission to the institutions. The students and their guardians have to move to different areas of the country for the admission tests facing mental pressure apart from the hassle of travel.
This is an almost inhumane task for the students and parents who have to go from Dhaka to Chittagong to Rajshahi to sit for the examinations on consecutive days. The costs in terms of time and money are significantly a burden for many families.
And all of us know about our traffic system, which is still seriously haphazard and backward. We had to spend extra hours to reach our destination than normal time. So in the admission season, it turns into a bad situation.
Boys can easily move from one corner of the country to another during the admission, but the girls cannot move alone from one place to another easily. They need to have their guardians with them. So it creates another problem to manage an accommodation for them. Most of the times the admission seekers don’t have any suitable place to stay. Many of them take shelter in the university halls with the senior students. All the students may not have this kind of accommodation. So they have to cost extra fee to find an accommodation.
With the accommodation problem they suffer from food problems too. They have to take food outside, so they suffer from different diseases for taking unhygienic foods from here and there.
And definitely all these unfavourable situations don’t allow them to prove their worth in the admission test.
Where the students are the sufferers in the event of admission tests, the universities are gainers by selling the forms. Most probably it’s the main reason the universities are opposing the cluster system as has been reported referring to the education minister and the UGC.
All these unnecessary hassles can be avoided if university admission tests can be conducted in ‘cluster system’. University authorities cannot do anything with our traffic system and the problems on the roads. They cannot change the ongoing selling of unhygienic food in the hotels but they can definitely change the system of admission. An arrangement must be made so that students can sit for admission test in their district or maximum divisional cities at least.
The university authorities should think about the admission system again and introduce the ‘cluster system’ immediately for the welfare of this country.
Arafat Rahaman is a student of Mass Communication and Journalism Department in Rajshahi University.