New Delhi, June 8 (IANS) While 80 per cent of Class XII students are relieved and pleased that the board examinations have been cancelled, nearly two-third of them are concerned about the use of internal school assessments to calculate results, a survey revealed on Tuesday.The online survey, led by the study abroad platform The WorldGrad, was conducted among more than 4,000 users who registered on the platform in the last two months.It showed that 60 per cent of the students do not think that it is a good idea to use pre-boards and internal school marks to calculate their Calss XII results.On June 1, the Centre had decided to cancel the CBSE Class XII board exams for 2021 in view of the prevailing Covid-19 situation in the country. The Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) has also scrapped the ISC (Class XII) exams for this year, saying that a scheme for evaluating the students will be announced soon. Many state boards have also cancelled the Class XII board exams in their respective states.Following the cancellation, speculation is rife on what would be the methodology to calculate the Class XII board scores."CBSE and CISCE may ask the schools to submit their internal scores and most likely combine them with class X and XI results. This process is likely to take another month, maybe more, which means the results will be announced by July or August," Abhinav Mital, Co-Founder, The WorldGrad, said in a statement."However, based on the survey, it is likely that the students will not be happy with this methodology. There are two reasons for it. Firstly, this year all the internal examinations have been conducted online with most schools struggling with the modality. Students and parents have little confidence in the internal assessments conducted. "Secondly, the students always use the final examinations to prepare and improve their performance and maximise their results, which will not happen this time," he added.The survey also showed that 80 per cent of the students have given a pre-board exams, but only 55 per cent have received the results. However, regardless of whether they have received the results, 60 per cent of the students are not in favour of using these for their final scores."Nearly half the students haven't even gotten formal results from the schools, which suggests that schools haven't really formalised anything. We have heard from some of our students that schools have just 'shown' them marks online during Zoom calls," Mital said.Meanwhile, the Education Ministry has constituted a 12-member committee which will decide the basis of evaluation for declaring the results of Class XII students. But the process could take over two months.Mital noted that if the students' feedbacks are considered, the boards may face a more complicated situation than expected where many schools may not be in a position to produce bankable scores, and some may even have to conduct fresh exams to produce them. This could very well see results being pushed to the end of August."For study abroad aspirants, this could be a major blow. Any delay beyond July means they may miss out the September intake cycle. To streamline this, the study abroad platforms like The WorldGrad have introduced pre-enrolments to undergraduate courses on their respective platforms for the students who are awaiting their Class XII results," Mital said.--IANSrvt/arm
New Delhi, May 10 (IANS) Google on Monday said it has raised over $4.6 million (Rs 33 crore) to date under its internal donation campaign to raise funds for nonprofit organisations in India which are helping the needy during the lethal second Covid wave.The nonprofits that are part of the campaign include GiveIndia, Charities Aid Foundation India, GOONJ, and United Way of Mumbai.To help people search for is the availability of hospital beds and access to medical oxygen, Google is also testing a new feature using the Q&A function in Maps that enables people to ask about and share local information on availability of beds and medical oxygen in select locations."As this will be user generated content and not provided by authorised sources, it may be required to verify the accuracy and freshness of the information before utilizing it," Google said."In addition to showing 2,500 testing centres on Search and Maps, we're now sharing the locations of over 23,000 vaccination centres nationwide, in English and eight Indian languages," it added.Google last month announced Rs 135 crore ($18 million) to help get urgent medical supplies, including oxygen and testing equipments, for India.The donation includes two grants from Google.org, Google's philanthropic arm, totalling Rs 20 crore.The company said that on YouTube, it is showing authoritative information in a set of playlists, about vaccines, preventing the spread of Covid-19, and facts from experts on Covid-19 care."As well as providing authoritative answers to queries, we're using our channels to help extend the reach of health information campaigns," Google noted.--IANSna/vd
Washington, April 5 (IANS) The ability to control your own behaviour, known as executive function, develops with many influences from outside the mind, suggests a new theory.
The theory, detailed in the journal Perspectives on Psychological Science, draws on dynamic systems theory which originated in mathematics and physics and has been used to describe complex organising phenomena like cloud formation and flying patterns of birds.
The executive function has been shown to play a role in everything from children's readiness for school to their social relationships.
Its development is also tied to long-term outcomes for adulthood.
"We propose that executive function is really about using cues from the environment to guide your behaviour," said Sammy Perone, Assistant Professor at the Washington State University.
"As humans we use our experience and norms to decide what's the appropriate path to take, so to encourage executive function development, we want to help children build those connections between cues and appropriate behaviours."
In a classroom, these cues might include things such as decorations on the wall, verbal instructions or the way tables are set up.
Eliminating environmental distractions may also help children control their behaviour like having sharpened pencils on hand or resolving a tottering desk chair.
In addition, physical things normally thought of as peripheral, like whether a child has adequate sleep or enough to eat, also influence executive function, Perone said.
Previously, the dominant view held that executive function was three distinct neurocognitive processes: working memory, inhibitory control, which is the ability to stop yourself from doing something, and cognitive flexibility, which allows you to transition from one activity to the next.
This perspective has been called into question, Perone said.
"If these different cognitive processes are what makes up executive function, you would think you could just train those processes, and then, you can then use them everywhere," he said.
"Turns out, that doesn't work, and that's been shown over and over again. People think and behave in an environment, so we can't just train executive function by say doing computer exercises on working memory."
The new theory builds on the work of cognitive scientist Sabine Doebel who called for a redefinition of executive function in 2020 as the "development of skills in using control in the service of behaviour".
<br>The level of ammonia in the water is between 1.7 parts per million and 1.9 parts per million. On Friday, it shot up to around 3.5 parts per million, which is perceived as an extremely high level of toxicity and is not fit for human consumption."When ammonia enters the body, it effects the blood cells, causes anemia, affects the nerves and its conduction, affects the brain which can cause early onset of dementia or Alzheimer's," Jugal Kishore, Head of Community Medicine at Safdarjung Hospital, told IANS.He added, "Long period of exposure to ammonia is dangerous. When it comes to drinking water, people should not use aluminum utensils in the house and use reverse osmosis (RO) filtration method."Another Delhi-based doctor, Tushar Grover, Medical Director at Vision Eye Centre, said that ammonia in a significant concentration can cause signs of chemical injuries which can cause irritation, discomfort, burning sensation and pain.P. Venkata Krishnan, a doctor of internal medicine at Paras Hospital, warned, "High ammonia level causes irritation in eyes, cough, lung injury, damage to lungs etc. It can cause damage to the internal organs and result in renal failure and respiratory problems. Such water can also be cleaned by RO technique and not boiling or filtration."He, however, emphasised that dissolved ammonia toxicity is not very common in humans because it requires large amount of ammonia to be delivered over a long period of time."The toxic level of ammonia affects aquatic animals and can contaminate the vegetables grown in that area, especially cauliflower which are grown in the open," he said.Earlier on Saturday, Delhi Jal Board Vice Chairman Raghav Chadha said the utility was working on a war footing to restore normal water supply in Delhi, which was affected due to high levels of ammonia in the Yamuna river.(Aakanksha Khajuria can be contacted at [email protected])--IANS<br>aka/arm
Toronto. People having sex with casual partners are more than twice as likely (85 per cent) to use condoms as people in committed relationships (36 per cent), says a new study.
Researchers from McMaster University peered into the most intimate moments of sexually active women and men across Canada to ask if they're using condoms, all in an effort to gather data that could inform decisions around public health and sex education.
For the study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, the researchers looked at penile-vaginal intercourse, a broad area that has been under-explored in recent decades.
The study found that condom use is greater among more educated people (50 per cent of college and university graduates) and among people who have received some kind of instruction in how to use condoms. (50 per cent of those who have received instruction)
"The indications that condom education is associated with increased condom usage is an important reminder, if that education did not exist, condom use would decline and risk would rise," said the study's lead researcher Tina Fetner from McMaster University in Canada.
In the study, researchers surveyed 2,300 people, balanced to mirror the gender, age, linguistic, educational, minority and regional make-up of Canada itself.
The survey included adults who have had intercourse at least 10 times in the last six months.
The survey revealed that 30 per cent of Canadians use condoms in penile-vaginal intercourse. Use is highest among young adults. (71 per cent among 18- to 35-year-olds).
Men who have been diagnosed with sexually-transmitted infections are about three times more likely to never use condoms than men who haven't received an STI diagnosis, the study said.
"The conclusion in the field is that there is a group of people who are just risk-takers, who are more likely to get STIs and continue with their risky behaviour," said Fetner.
According to the study, men from visible minority groups are much more likely (67 per cent) than white men (40 per cent) to use condoms.
In later stages, the research team plans to survey people in other countries where data is lacking, and to analyse how the results compare to existing policies that might be changed to minimize STIs and unwanted pregnancies through improved condom use. (IANS)
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New Delhi. Spermicide condoms are condoms coated with a chemical that kills sperm (spermicide) called nonoxynol-9 (N-9). Dr Uma Vaidyanathan, Senior Consultant, Fortis hospital, Shalimar Bagh shares the information you need to know about this method of birth control.
Condoms are a popular and an effective form of birth control and protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Appropriate use, that is, correct usage during sex and correct storage works in preventing unwanted pregnancies in more than 90 percent of cases.
But when it comes to "spermicide" condoms, although one would think that they would be more effective than routine condoms in preventing unwanted pregnancies and STIs, it's in fact a misconception!
Spermicides, used repeatedly or in higher doses, can damage the vaginal "epithelium", i.e. the layers of skin cells that line the vagina. This can lead to local vaginal and penile irritation and skin damage, thus making the woman more susceptible to infection by STIs and due to breaks in the skin, thereby transmitting it to her partner. Higher risk of infection with HIV, Herpes has been observed with repeated use of Nonoxynol 9. Some women have also reported an increased incidence of urinary tract infections with spermicide condoms, probably related to local skin damage.
Spermicide condoms are safe to use during pregnancy. There's no evidence that spermicides cause birth defects.
To conclude, spermicide condoms are safer for use in couples in a monogamous relationship, where the risk of sexually transmitted infections is minimal, and the sole purpose of protection is to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. Apart from that, considering cost and poor protection against infections, it offers little or no advantage over the routinely available non spermicide coated lubricated/non lubricated condoms. (IANSlife)
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