Excuses- Ideal Shield for Escape or Doom?

প্রকাশিত: ৬:৩৮ পূর্বাহ্ণ, নভেম্বর ১১, ২০১৭

Excuses- Ideal Shield for Escape or Doom?

Mohammad Osman Farhan Al Harun
The unknown face stared at the course instructor with surprise sitting behind the back row of the class. In the crowd of pupils who are mostly known faces, that person seems to be a stranger in the class. Gradually, his identity is clear when he opens his mouth- “I’m actually new in the class, Sir. I remained absent for the last few classes due to……………reasons”.
In my teaching career, I’ve come across numerous cases with peculiar experiences related to ‘excuses’ of absentees, especially in the language courses. First of all, I felt pity for those were absent in the regular classes of an undergrad course and gave excuses of family problem, sickness, conflicting time, distance, for their absence. However, the most common excuse so far I’ve experienced is- “Sir, I got stuck in the traffic jam”, even in the early Friday morning or Saturday noon!
Truly speaking, a good teacher needs to be a good listener and have patience in order to solve the problems of his pupils. When the students give lame excuses for prolonged absence stating different stories, it creates a ridiculous situation sometimes instead of sympathy. In a mega city like Dhaka, traffic jam is such a common issue that lazy fellows need to improve their time sense to sustain here properly. Besides, ‘Family problem’ is absolutely personal excuse, so, a person should better avoid this issue to get benefit from teachers unless it is really serious. Again, for the course instructors of English Language, Business Administration and technical subjects, it is really a challenging decision to accept students’ excuses of ‘job’ or ‘business’ for prolonged absence in a regular course, especially in undergrad or post grad programs.
As a matter of fact, ‘regular attendance’ in the class is such an important issue that these excuses of absence can’t make up the loss at any cost. For example, when an instructor demonstrates a technical lesson by practical examples and exercises, an absentee in the class really misses a lot that can’t be covered properly by reading mere textbook. This fact is also applicable for missing tutorials and quizzes on the relevant topics. Actually, CGPA-based education and certificate culture blocked our thoughts for which we can’t get perfect employees having applied knowledge on particular discipline. In fear of facing the challenges, sometimes many learners intentionally avoid classes on important subjects and even don’t bother what lesson s/he really missed. However, these absentees expect better grades at the end of the semester since it is important to please their guardians and employers.
In ‘IELTS’ exam, an examinee usually needs to demonstrate proper language proficiency in particular areas of English language. If a prospective candidate gets admission in a coaching center to learn the basic techniques before appearing in the real test, it sometimes helps a lot. To the contrary, if anyone intentionally misses one class where many issues have been covered, is it really possible to get expected band score in IELTS? Technical studies always emphasize on practical knowledge and it is somewhat impossible for any absentee to cover the lesson without attending the related classes or having relevant experience.
Continuing ‘job and study’ together is getting common in the life cycle of many smart citizens in Bangladesh. But, it has been observed that many jobholders like to give excuses of their office time as reason forabsence in the regular classes, exams, even submitting assignment and assigned tasks. Their perception is that attending the term exams at the end and makeup tests are sufficient. The course teacher will be somehow managed later on by the excuses of ‘job’ and ‘sorry faces’. But when these persons get poor grades in the exams and subsequently demonstrate unsatisfactory performance in real life, especially in the respective profession, who is to blame? Surprisingly, they like to blame their course instructors, institutions, often make false stories to get sympathy or simply blame their ‘luck’!
Believe it or not, we are all responsible for what we are today for one has to belief- we make our own fate i.e. luck.


April 2021