Aptitude-based admission

Students must ensure ability to cope in school

It is heartening to see the measures taken by the Ministry of Education to reduce the emphasis on national academic examination results alone ("Polys, unis to take more with talents and interest"; last Saturday).

Instead of depending solely on their exam results, students now have the opportunity to be assessed based on their talents and interests.

That being said, with the increase in the number of students being accepted via alternative admission procedures, the cut-off point for admission based on exam results may have to be tightened to adhere to admission quotas.

This will make it more difficult for students who have chosen the traditional admission track, based on just results, to secure places in certain high-demand courses.

Besides that, students who are admitted by the special admission schemes may face fierce competition in their respective courses if their performance is not as good, compared with students who get in based on their academic results.

As a student, I have heard of many cases of students transferring out of top institutions, citing the highly stressful environment.

Therefore, students should not view aptitude-based admissions as a shortcut to secure a position in one of the better institutions or courses.

Without genuine interest, students are likely to suffer and will eventually lose out.

This also deprives another student, who has the ability to cope with the rigours of the course, of the chance to pursue his passion.

Hence, it is crucial for students to do a self-assessment and to evaluate themselves based on their genuine interests and ability to cope with the rigours of the course before submitting their applications.

Lin Lejia (Miss)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 13, 2016, with the headline 'Students must ensure ability to cope in school'. Print Edition | Subscribe