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Just realized… December 4, 2006

Posted by Sharath Rao in America, india, littlerockers.
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Schooled in the Indian education system, when the results of a test/exam are released, the most interesting questions ( reproduced verbatim for LRIS nostalgia maniacs !) asked in the chronological order ( and arugably increasing order of actual significance !) were :

1. a) Teacher, what is the highest (,) teacher ?
b) Who (,) teacher ?

In American high schools, the questions are :

2. a) What the class average ?
b) Whats the standard deviation ? ( optional )

These are not superficial differences. These are deep questions because the two numbers considering just 1.a and 2.a have different significance and give different ( though somewhat related) information with respect to how we measure ourselves against our peer population ?

[ When was the last time I wrote an entire post without a single outgoing link – finally an ‘uninspired ‘ though not necessarily original idea ? One of the reasons people blog ! ]

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1. Aswin - December 4, 2006

I think this sentiment comes from our parents . That’s the first question at least my parents would ask .. A dialogue at home would go as follows..

me: I got 82 in Maths
Mom: Good… what’s the highest ?
me: er… uhmm.. 99 😦

( why did all the future IIT toppers aka karthik have to be in my class?? )

anyway, our parents weigh us against the highest – the best we can be , instead of the class average.

I think this is great.. to keep competing with the best, and not the average.


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