Oxford University students unhappy with the elite scholar gowns, vote against it

An online poll was carried out by the Oxford University students’ union in which students had to express their opinions regarding undergraduates with scholarships or better scores wearing scholars’ gowns during examinations.

Representative image – Image source: brookes.ac.uk

Representative image - Image source: brookes.ac.uk

An online poll was carried out by the Oxford University students’ union in which students had to express their opinions regarding undergraduates with scholarships or better scores wearing scholars’ gowns during examinations. Majority of students voted against the ban.

As per Indian Express report, it was after students raised the issue on the ‘inferior’ and ‘elitist’ notions that the gowns entailed that the poll was conducted.

Permission denied to average students

Students with scholarships or better scores than other students have the permission to wear long-sleeve gowns during exams while all other students are required to wear sleeveless gowns, triggering a ‘stressful environment’ with reminders that there are students who scored better in previous exams and preliminaries.

“It is perverse to deny those who have achieved academically the rewards of their success,” said Thomas Munro, a student, in an article in the university newspaper, Cherwell.

Total 3,373 students — 14 per cent of the student body — had participated in the poll.

Outcome

Approximately 2,126 students voted against the banning of the differential gowns in exams, while 1,214 voted in favour of the motion.

“It was further suggested that scholars’ gowns, which cost 45 euros, do not accurately represent academic achievement,” said Henry Straughan, another student at Oxford University. The gown had been prohibited in 2016 during viva voce exams to reduce bias by examiners who notice the gown.

“The hierarchical gown structure is fundamentally in conflict with ideals of community and equality that the university espouses, all the more so because the division between those wearing

[Source”cnbc”]