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Scrapping Licensure Exams? 3 Professionals Share Their Thoughts

'The licensure exams make these professionals locally and globally competitive.'

Social media was abuzz yesterday because of Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III’s statement questioning the need for licensure exams for certain professions. He argued that the exams are unnecessary because the students have already gone through several tests before graduating.

“In my meeting with the Philippine Nurses Association and the [Philippine] Board of Nursing, I said, ‘Why don’t you recommend that we do away with examinations? Why do we need to have examinations?,” Bello said on Wednesday in a mix of English and Filipino.

“Sabi ko, Pag-aralan ‘nyo ‘yan and then we can recommend to Congress na tanggalin na ‘yang exam-exam na ‘yan.’ Gastos sa ating nurses na nakuha na ang pag-aaral na kailangan nila, eh puwede na mag-practice. Pero depende pa rin ‘yan, dahil under law ay dadaan dapat,” Bello continued. (Read: Iatf Allows Licensure Exams to Resume, PRC Releases Schedule)

The labor chief also said board exams for the engineering and dentistry practices should be scrapped, as well as Bar exams for future lawyers.

With that, we ask the community how they feel about the labor secretary’s thoughts.

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Clary Mirafuente, Architect

Being the initial indicator of whether an individual meets the technical, professional, and legal standards of a particular field, I think it is rather a bad idea to remove the licensure exams. You cannot rely on experience alone, especially sa field namin (architecture) kasi not everyone is blessed with early opportunities in the playing field. You don’t just shoot with your gun, you ought to have the right bullets and I think the licensure exams prepare you for that.

Of course, some say that whatever placement you get from the board exams does not justify how you function in the real world pero hindi lang naman academic intelligence ang sinusukat ng boards– it actually encompasses your discipline as a person, intra/inter personal skills, and other soft skills. You can’t just remove those implied domains and let graduation alone be the standard for the workforce. Without the boards, ano ang wa-warm up sa’yo in the real world? (Read: Meet the architect who dedicated his career to helping the urban poor)

Micah Taban, RMT, Medical Technologist

I don’t agree that the licensure exams should be scrapped. The board/Bar exam maintains the quality of the workforce for certain professions. The license and swearing to an oath, adds value and sets standards to the profession itself and makes the individual more accountable to the service he/she will be providing. The licensure exams make these professionals locally and globally competitive. (Read: Bishop Questions Limit on Medical Workers’ Deployment)

Rayna Eunice Marte, Dentist

I firmly believe that licensure exams aren’t just a test of knowledge. It also reflects on a person’s strength, courage, and determination to pass the exam. As the saying goes: no guts, no glory. Also, this licensure exam also ensures that people who will be in the practice are competitive enough to do their job, especially with us here in the medical field. we handle lives so everything must be taken seriously and with compassion.

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