CBSE News: CBSE Boards in two parts to address online learning gaps

In a first step of its kind, CBSE has divided the evaluation criteria of class X, XII boards and divided them into two parts in the current academic session. Academics claim that the pandemic and extended school closures have widened deep educational inequalities such as students’ access to technology and ability to learn in remote environments. This would have prompted CBSE to reschedule its exam plan. The move is also seen as a formal launch in NEP-2020, in which board exams have been redesigned to analyze the overall development of students and test their ‘core competencies’.

The policy mandates that Term 1 will consist of MCQ type objective questions (of 90 marks), while Term II will consist of subjective type questions only (of 120 marks). There will be no overlapping of syllabus and the final marks will be based on the performance of the students in both these examinations for which equal weightage will be given to both except in case of school closure for which the weightage will be reduced.

Distribution of courses in two parts


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“The assessment policy was formulated keeping in mind the ongoing pandemic, for which the board would not have to ask the schools to prepare various documents, details and data in fire-fighting mode. It was decided to conduct the examination in two parts, so that at least one examination data is with CBSE, on the basis of which the result can be declared in case of unforeseen circumstances. Since many students are not able to focus on their studies during the pandemic, the two-part exam will prompt them to get more serious about their academics. Having said that, online classes are probably not the right way to assimilate the knowledge, and putting more burden on the students with the entire syllabus, it would mean subjecting them to undue stress,” Controller of Examinations, Sanyam Bharadwaj, told saying while doing
Education Times.

In order to reduce their academic burden, the board has decided to rationalize the syllabus and divide it into two parts, after which the subjects in both the exams will not be repeated, but continuity and logical progress will be maintained.

On the objective and subjective question pattern of the two exams, which will test the critical thinking of the students, Bharadwaj points out that efforts are being made to give equal weightage to both, either through marks or in terms of number of questions. “All kinds of permutations and combinations are being worked out, the weightage for which will also depend on the current pandemic situation as the board is nearing the exam to avoid ad-hoc arrangements in the 2020-2021 session,” says Bhardwaj.

Since the question papers for both Term 1 and Term II examinations will be made available by the Board, the sample question papers will be uploaded by the Academic Department of CBSE on its website any day after mid-July, to help teachers guide the students. So to receive. Question Pattern.

flexible measures

The reason why the board has decided to give flexibility to schools for Term 1 exams to be held in November-December with a window duration of 4-8 weeks, Bhardwaj reason is that the decision would be taken by mid-term exams and schools to complete the syllabus by then. may not be able to; In addition, states cannot allow schools to reopen early. When Term-II exams are conducted in March-April, it is assumed that the country will be relatively safe as the government is making efforts to complete the vaccination process by December, he says.

Net connectivity needed

Students’ responses for both the exams will be recorded on OMR sheets, which after scanning will be uploaded directly on the CBSE portal or uploaded by the school on the same day. “It requires internet connectivity, for which schools are well equipped as they are already uploading the registration details of students and internal assessment marks to the board,” explains Bhardwaj.

no online option

Whether online exams on the lines of JEE will be a viable option in this pandemic-hit session, Bharadwaj elaborated that the system may only work for some schools and students, and not when there is about 24-25 hours for the class. Lakhs of students should be present. Around 14-15 lakh students for X board and class XII board. “There is no such system by which we can conduct the exam online and that too in a day. Even the subjects vary so much between 5-7, which would rule out that possibility for all the candidates across the board.

will reduce the academic load

Talking about the new evaluation scheme of the board, Shubhangi More, Principal, KLE School, Dharwad, says, “Learning will be more effective if we break the board exam into small pieces and evaluate accordingly. Apart from reducing the anxiety and stress of the students, changes in curriculum and assessments will help in better knowledge assimilation and learning with desirable learning outcomes. ”

Alka Kapoor, Principal, Modern Public School, Shalimar Bagh, New Delhi, agrees. “The syllabus of the academic session will be divided into two terms by following a systematic approach with about 50% in each session. This division will help in better conceptual learning and also benefit the students in their competitive exams. This will cater to the needs of students who do not have proper resources to learn effectively on virtual platforms, while reducing the pressure on students to learn the entire book at the end of the year.”

aptitude based test

Commenting on Term II, and the Board’s decision to have subjective question papers in different formats, Mor believes that the question paper will have a combination of critical thinking skills, higher order thinking skills (HOTS), application-based knowledge Questions of different formats may be included to take the test. Such questions will help in analyzing the competencies of the students rather than assessing the facts.

Overall, COVID-19, she says, has helped us understand the need of the individual student rather than the overall need. “It gave us the opportunity to see diversity, equality and inclusion in our assessment activities. I hope this continues as a trend and remains as a part of our valuation culture.”

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