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29 December, 2017 00:00 00 AM
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Note and guidebooks stifling creativity

Note and guidebooks stifling creativity

The debate about how education in general allows or stifles creativity to flourish has a very unseemly dimension of guide plus notebooks. On the one hand, these products commercialise education, while on the other, make a handful of people staggeringly wealthy. It’s heartening to find that the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) will be launching an investigation into guidebook traders who have made astonishing amounts of money. Obviously, this investigation has been triggered by conspicuous opulence of certain quarters who were socially acknowledged middle class some time ago.

Now there can be two facets to this investigation, the first focuses on unscrupulous trade of guidebooks which is banned by an executive order promulgated in 2008. According to this existing law, notebooks and guides cannot be printed and sold, although it’s common knowledge that such books are sold widely with impunity.

Consequently, students become dependent on notes made by others, giving very little effort at creative thought. The downside of guidebook culture becomes only too apparent when students either go abroad to study or face the task of sitting for the English language pre-requisite exams, TOEFL or IELTS.

These and other tougher tests like GRE, GMAT evaluate a person’s creative and analytical ability, where pre-exam note imbibing habit comes to very little help. Then, there is the worry that education is becoming formulaic, giving the students certificates but robbing them of their confidence.

The second facet of the guidebook scourge is the sudden surge of wealth in the case of traders. After a recent revealation that two sisters in the city used a ceramics shop in the heart of town as a cover for their multi million Taka Yaba trade, all possible diabolical schemes need to be taken into account.

But overall, the crackdown on the proliferation of such books in the market that falsely purport to support the student has been long overdue. While the ACC looks into the possibilities of crime or any other illegal activity using the guidebook industry as a camouflage, a thorough assessment of the books are required, so the findings can be placed before us. At the same time, some noted talk shows must bring specialists on TV and during a live programme dissect some of the most popular guidebooks, highlighting their faults.

In Bangladesh, education is often wrapped in so much gimmicks that the knowledge is overshadowed by the name of the institution of the famed teacher. Since the authority has taken notice, it would be appreciated if the next move is on mushrooming coaching centres.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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