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Merits of the Entrance Test Merit System: The Need for Refining and Redefining

Submitted by on November 20, 2014 – 8:32 PM One Comment

medicalWe can imagine the feeling of victory and power when we raise our spirits to compete but when we consider reality, we realize that people struggle more against their rivals to reach the highest standard! We see that an ‘entrance test’ is conducted for admission to universities including medical schools, where competition is at its peak with a large number of students applying for only a few seats. No doubt, this entrance test makes them struggle to get this admission and finally, some are selected for merit seats but others, who “lag behind” get the self-finance seats. So what exactly is “lagging behind”?


Then the session starts, annual examinations are conducted, results are announced and paradoxically, we observe is that some people with higher merit get low marks compared to those who were on self-finance seats. Now,here I want to explain the term “lagging behind”. Who know whether the self-finance students suffered any mishap before the day of the entrance test? Where self finance seats are only 25% and in this little percentage the probability becomes relatively high.


Some might argue that all the self-finance students couldn’t have had a mishap. Indeed but in a small percentage of students this number seems much higher. Now, I ask my readers whether it seems fair enough to decide somebody’s whole career in just one test? Or to snatch one’s dream because they can’t afford a self-finance seat?


It most certainly is NOT! In my opinion, the merit should be changed every year with every annual examinations because some people on higher merits with negligible fees don’t feel like struggling through medical school enough and then practising medicine later because they’re not the ones spending a lot on their education. And hence the government’s resources are wasted in producing doctors who are least interested in practising medicine and giving back to the country.


So what’s the solution? People who get higher percentages in annual examinations should be replaced with those on higher merits.This way, everyone keeps struggling till the last year and I’m sure this struggle will make them a very good doctor and it prevents the self-finance students from losing hope that no matter how much they struggle they’ll have to pay self-finance fees or the merit students from becoming complacent that no matter how irresponsible they become with their professional studies they’ll just have to give few thousands. I want to conclude my article by still convincing my readers that fairness and competition can make a lot difference to our country, economy and society.



About the Author: Zohair Lilani is a 3rd year medical student of Karachi Medical And Dental College, affiliated with Karachi University, Pakistan and has a keen interest in research. He can be reached at [email protected]


About this article: This article is competing for the JPMS International Medical Writing Contest 2014.

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  • M Ali

    Sure, the system needs many reforms, but the author’s suggestion that someone on a self-finance seat isn’t as deserving of a medical education as someone on ‘merit’ is repulsive and represents a twisted mentality. In the West, medical students take on crippling debts and loans to pay off their medical education – American doctors are six figures into debt before they even start their professional career.

    Only in Pakistan can you get a prestigious medical education for next to nothing and then waste it away to further your marriage prospects. If this isn’t the definition of snatching someone’s opportunity, I don’t know what is. Why doesn’t the author vent out his frustration against this rampant abuse of ‘merit’?

    The best way to weed out rishta-concerned freeloaders from entering our medical system and abusing taxpayer’s money is to make ALL medical seats on self-finance and offer student loans just like the rest of the world. The girls in our medical system (who form the vast majority) have absolutely no idea of the value of a subsidized medical education.