Art of Honesty- How can Educators Help?

From Current Affairs Notes for UPSC » Editorials & In-depths » This topic

In the rapidly changing world of the 21st century, educators find themselves grappling with changing student behaviors and perceptions, influenced heavily by digital culture. This shift over the past two decades is particularly noticeable when reflecting upon student engagements and their values, especially concerning honesty.

This topic of “Art of Honesty- How can Educators Help?” is important from the perspective of the UPSC IAS Examination, which falls under General Studies Portion.

Digital Culture and Its Impacts

Rise of the Digital Era

  • Shift in cultural temperament.
  • Advent of fake news, WhatsApp forwards, and the Instagram phenomenon.
  • Shift from genuine experiences to a vocabulary of lies.

Change in Student’s Perception

  • Previous innocence and genuine curiosity.
    • For instance, the Robinson Crusoe question highlighting a simpler perspective.
  • New distractions and diminished independent-mindedness.
  • Dominance of smartphones and the internet, influencing imagination.

Shift in Student Engagement and Activism

  • Reduced fearlessness of students in modern times.
  • Sparse student protest movements; exceptions proving the norm.
  • Different institutional backgrounds but universal challenges.
    • Comparing provincial colleges to liberal arts institutions.
    • Economic disparities but common cultural influences.

Cultural Dishonesty and Its Effects

  • Students’ exposure to a culture dominated by dishonesty.
  • Influenced by market forces, leading to timidity and obedience.
  • The role of digital platforms like Instagram.
    • Inability to remember “liked” posts.
    • Contrasted with memorable poems, songs, and quotations.
  • The depth and memorability of language and art.

Art, Intentionality, and Honesty

Defining Art Beyond Intention

  • Art’s power comes from being outside of intentional design.
  • Necessity of art, compared to essential human experiences.
  • Differentiating craft from mere skill.

Challenges in the Modern Culture

  • Warning against disingenuousness and disenchantment.
  • The issues with self-praise, marketing, and biased reviews.
  • The misuse and overuse of certain terms leading to their dilution.

Promoting Intellectual Independence

  • Encouraging students to form their own opinions.
  • Meeting texts directly, avoiding the noise of cultural biases.
  • Using art, like John Lennon’s songs, to promote thinking and remembrance.

Prelims Sureshots – Most Probable Topics for UPSC Prelims

A Compilation of the Most Probable Topics for UPSC Prelims, including Schemes, Freedom Fighters, Judgments, Acts, National Parks, Government Agencies, Space Missions, and more. Get a guaranteed 120+ marks!

Way Forward

In addressing the challenges posed by digital culture, educators can:

  • Encourage genuine engagements over superficial interactions.
  • Promote critical thinking, urging students to see beyond the surface.
  • Utilize art as a tool for teaching, ensuring students see the value in depth and authenticity.


The ever-evolving landscape of education, heavily influenced by digital culture, has transformed students’ perspectives and interactions. While challenges abound, opportunities also exist for educators to harness the power of art, promote critical thinking, and champion genuine engagements, ultimately fostering a more honest, inquisitive, and independent-minded generation.

Practice Question for Mains

How can educators help cultivate a culture of honesty among their students in this present day and age? (250 words)

Related Posts

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Home Courses Plans Account