Can Weak Students Participate in Olympiads?

by Aparajita Das, July 25, 2020

The sole purpose of conducting Olympiad examinations is to enhance the knowledge of various subjects among the school students. There is a myth that Olympiad examinations are meant for students who excel in their studies or precisely for the rank-holders of a class. Well, it must be highlighted here that there is no criterion for minimum marks that a student has to secure for participating in an Olympiad examination. Here’s how the Olympiad examination helps in the overall development of each and every student, especially the weak students participating in it.  

Helps Students to Identify Their Innate Subject Interests

As all the subjects have almost equal weightage in school level examinations, often students are unable to discover their innate subject interests. For example, a student in the eighth grade has to do equally well in all Social Studies, Mathematics, English, Second Language, and Computer applications, to secure the top ranks in his class. Unlike the traditional examinations conducted in schools, Olympiads are subject-based examinations. Students can choose the Olympiad subjects according to their free will and interest. They can register for the particular subjects that they like to study and test their knowledge. Also, when given a choice, most students opt for one or two subjects for Olympiad examinations, hence getting a chance to dig a little more into those subjects. 

Builds up Self-Belief Among Students

Since students are given a choice of subjects for Olympiad examination, they are likely to succeed more in it. Also, their ranks are totally based on their performance in individual subjects in these examinations. This higher success rate or a good score in Olympiads helps to build up self-belief among many students, nurturing them to be confident in all their future endeavours. Many students are observed to do better at school with the confidence they gain from Olympiad exams. 

Promotes an In-Depth Understanding of Subjects

When students prepare for an Olympiad examination, they have to dig deep into the concerned subject and gain a deeper understanding. There are several popular workbooks for Olympiad preparation, that facilitate knowledge-based learning of subjects. Students develop a proper understanding of various concepts and become well-equipped with good reasoning skills during their Olympiad preparation. 

For example, a student of class 9 preparing for the Mathematics Olympiad will have a syllabus similar to that of class 10 Mathematics Olympiad. In this case, even though the difficulty levels will differ for classes 9 and 10, a student having an in-depth knowledge of the topics covered will be able to clear both the examinations. Also, students securing a good score in class 9 Mathematics Olympiad will have a smooth sail in class 10 Mathematics Olympiad.

Instills a Healthy Competition into the Students

Olympiad examinations are designed in such a way that is ought to bring out the best in students. When they participate in an Olympiad examination, the main motto is to answer as many questions as they can in the stipulated time. When the young school children participate in Olympiad examinations, they are occupied with great anticipation. As they do not know all the other children participating in the examination, beating their classmates’ records does not bother them much. Hence a healthy competition is instilled in the students participating in Olympiad examinations. There is less peer pressure and students are better focussed to answer the questions to the best of their knowledge and ability. Hence, when students secure a good rank in an Olympiad examination, they feel optimally confident and are encouraged to put in more effort in studies.

Encourages Out-of-the-Box Thinking Among Students

Most of the questions in an Olympiad are so designed that trigger out-of-the-box thinking among the students. When students practice worksheets for Olympiad preparation, they will be able to find various ways to analyze a question and will try to solve it in the shortest possible time. This will enhance their logical intelligence and they will be equipped with a good analytical ability. Apart from Olympiads, this out-of-the-box thinking will help the students to solve tricky problems in various other examinations. 

So preparation for an Olympiad examination helps to improve the confidence level and overall routine class performance of the weaker students and enhances the knowledge of the top-performing students in a class. Some schools select the top performers from classes 1 to 12 to participate in an Olympiad, anticipating a higher success rate of the participants. You may insist on your teachers so that you can participate in the Olympiads and as these examinations are open for all students, most schools encourage all its students to participate in it. The plus point for any school with a greater number of students participating in Olympiads is that the school’s overall reputation hikes up with the success of its students. 

School students need to participate in Olympiad examinations to discover their interests in various subjects. This will, in turn, help them narrow down on their career choices for the future.

Can Weak Students Participate in Olympiads?