By A Special Correspondent
First publised on 2021-11-15 08:41:19
CBSE should be lauded for taking the decision to provide answer keys to school principals and ensuring that OMR (optical mark recognition) sheets are evaluated within hours after the 1st term exams end for board examinees and the marks are uploaded on the website on the same day. The same day evaluation and declaration of results will be possible as the exams are being held in the short format system of multiple choice questions (MCQ) through OMRs.
This will be very different from the average marking that was resorted to last year during the Covid disruption when physical exams were avoided. That had resulted in the board being very liberal with marks and very high marks for many undeserving students. It also resulted in very high cut-offs for admissions to UG courses. That situation was not sustainable and the CBSE has rightly decided to test the students through the new system.
The Covid-led disruption in education has forced boards and schools to think of innovative ways imparting learning and testing the knowledge of students. This is good as it will bring about change for the better. MCQ is a more scientific way of testing students (as long as questions are not repeated, even in three four years) as it will not require students to learn by rote for writing long answers and will test their understanding of the subject rather than their capacity to learn by rote. Perhaps a combination of both short and long format will be adopted now.
The lead taken by the CBSE should be followed by other boards. There must also be an attempt to take this online and even think of allowing open book tests for the long format. Experts must provide inputs and administrators must do away with the old system to come up with new and better methods of testing students as this prolonged disruption of education has proved that out of the box thinking is needed to impart learning and test knowledge in these changed times.