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A video that is currently going viral online shows Australian professors reacting to the JEE question paper. The Joint Entrance Examination is used to admit students into the top engineering colleges of India, including the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology. The test requires candidates to answer questions on mathematics, physics and chemistry. The video highlights just how difficult the entrance exam is, even for professors in the field.
For the video, YouTuber 'Tibees' interviewed six Australian professors and asked them to review a JEE question paper.
"If it's not at all intimidating to you, you are a pretty impressive student," says Dr James Hutchison, flipping through the question paper right at the beginning of the video. "I'd probably, you know, leave the exam room crying if I was in year 12 and I had to do this. Yeah, good luck, good luck."
"I had a look at a couple of the math section papers and I would say that I would be fairly challenged to get a decent result in an hour," Professor Barry Hughes, a mathematician, adds.
Other professors interviewed for the video also pointed out that the questions asked of high school students in India are from topics taught at university level in Australia.
The professors also offered their views on whether or not the JEE exam could be taken as a good way of selecting potential engineering students.
"A lot of the questions are based on the principle of memorisation and recitation, which I think is an extraordinarily bad education tool," says Dr Shane Huntington.
Mathematician Barry Hughes also points out the "ugly question" of unequal access to resources and coaching classes.
"We all know that in any educational system if you go to a good school, well resourced, with the best teachers and so on like that, you expect a better outcome... But with these race-against-the-clock-style examinations, there's a trade-off between the student's ability in the subject, natural intelligence, and their having been trained to deal with examinations of this type," he says.
Watch video at https://youtu.be/0h_x13xHjVs