Your Current Performance is LacklustreSeptember 6, 2016 7:23 am Leave your thoughts
Within schools what you often find is competition between friends, classmates and maybe even within year groups. What we consider much less is inter-school competition, not only in your area but nationwide, even more so with international competition. It is not until you are looking to go to university or start a career that your little bubble is burst and you start realising that you’re not all that great.
Educational systems are ranked by country. At the top, we have Asian nations with Singapore, South Korea and Hong Kong claiming the top three spots. We however as part of the United Kingdom come in at a rather underwhelming twentieth position. With this in mind the question turns to ‘what are they doing, that we aren’t?’ There are many of you probably wondering how relevant this is and why you should care because the fact is you don’t live in Singapore or Korea, surely what they do doesn’t affect you…WRONG! and it is that exact frame of mind that will lead you straight onto the path of mediocrity.
Globalisation. That’s why. International integration now rules our world and your neighbour is no longer your toughest competition. There are over 436,000 international students within UK universities, which for many of these institutions explains how they have a rising 20-50% international intake. There are also over 5 million workers within the UK who were born overseas, this accounts for 16% of people of the workforce. All of this just goes to show how there is less and less room for you. The most successful people in the world know to keep an eye on their opponents and learn from their successes. Students in South Korea do some form of learning 7 days a week, while Singapore focuses more on conceptual learning and independent problem solving. The United Kingdom focuses more on memory retention which although this may suggest that we should be able to easily retain pieces of information, there is not a lot of emphasis on the application of the knowledge we gain to real-life situations. What you learn is useless if you cannot apply it and that is where many international students have the advantage because for them there was more emphasis on life skills such as work ethic, problem-solving, independence… etc.
Of course lists that attempt to rank countries based on how well their students are doing are extremely controversial and in all honesty, their results should be taken with a pinch of salt. What isn’t debatable however is the statistics showing that there are more and more people worldwide who are after the same thing that you are. Your job is to stand-out as that is the only way you will get anywhere close to the future you want.
The goal is not to constantly think of the competition, but rather be aware of it. Strive to be the best you can be but know your ambition, realise your capabilities and understand the environment. Don’t be naive because there will always be others who are better at what you do than you are, which is why ‘you can’t look at the competition and say you’re going to do it better. You have to look at the competition and say you’re going to do it differently.’- Steve Jobs.
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This post was written by No.1 Tutors