Sleepless nights, tension even after getting 95 % and above
This is probably what students eyeing for seats in Delhi University (DU) colleges must be going through these days. The reason: DU’s undergraduate admission is likely to see a new high thanks to the high scores in the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) exams.
ANALYSIS OF CBSE BOARD RESULT-2014
In the 2014 Class 12 CBSE results.
SCORED -95% and above is 8,971,up by nearly 3000
scored-90% and above-59,591,up by 15,000(crossing the 50,000 mark for the first time ever in the history of board exam)
scored-99% in economics=500 Students
scored 100% in chemistry-622 Students
scored-99 % and above In biology, 791 students
scored 98% and above in physics while 480 students.
Reports indicated that most colleges will set the cut-offs in their first lists above 95%.
One of the main reasons for such high marks is the CBSE’s liberal marking system, which the board introduced in 2006 after it came under pressure because of incidents of academic pressure-related suicides. Under the new scheme, the emphasis became more on objective questions, evaluators were told how to award marks and question papers were set with well-defined answers. But the irony of the situation is that what it set out to correct (too much pressure on students) has spawned another set of problems that is giving students sleepless nights.
This year, the CBSE made things even easier for students.
Ironically, other factors introduced by the Board to relieve the pressure on students like internal assessment have also indirectly contributed to the high scores. This year, 20 marks were allotted to project work for social sciences. Next year, maths practicals will be made mandatory.
EFFECTS OF HIGH PERCENTAGE
NCERT Director Professor Krishna Kumar, who has been at the helm of affairs of the National Curriculum Framework (NCF), believes this "inflationary trend" in marks is unfortunate. His point: "Liberal marking should not pass off as child-friendly examination reform."
Anil Wilson, principal of St Stephen's College, Delhi, concurs, adding that there is "wide disparity between aptitude and marks".
He says, "Gradually, colleges will have to move away from using Board examinations as the only parameter for assessment." Already, Delhi colleges have introduced entrance examinations for subjects like English.
The DU has started keeping abnormally high cut-offs
Reports indicated that most colleges will set the cut-offs in their first lists above 95%. The first cut off list will be released tomorrow, followed by up to nine more lists, depending on seat availability, till July 21. While the total number of applications in DU is around 270,000, the number of seats available is 54,000.
Both school and college teachers often complain that such 95+ marks do not reflect a student’s calibre.
Teachers have often told the media that they are being “forced” to award high marks even to undeserving students and this is one of the main reasons why students are not found employable even after graduating from top colleges.
In an interview HRD minister Smriti Irani has said that the government will work on a new education policy. The new policy must try to redress the current situation that has developed due to uneven marking across boards and debate what CNR Rao, former scientific adviser to the UPA, had suggested some years ago: An all-India common entrance test for higher education, including medical and technical courses.