The Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board (KSEEB) is thinking about bringing back the old method of writing exams for the SSLC students in Karnataka. A decade ago, students used to receive two sheets - one was a question paper and the other was an answer sheet.
The aforementioned system of writing board exams had to be sent into oblivion as it paved way for malpractices from students. Even many teachers were also caught helping their students copy answers. It was post 2006 that the new method of answering questions in SSLC board exam was introduced.
The new method is called as Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) where students need not write lengthy answers. They just have to darken circles as their answers and later the computers capture these dots as data, thus helping the exam board perform evaluation.
However, the decision of the state exam department to bring back the old, flawed method of exam from it decade long slumber has already been criticised by many within the department itself. The system of providing question and answer sheets separately was scrapped due to its vulnerability which was exploited by many teachers and students to carry out the evil activities like malpractice.
Reintroducing the system means question papers and answer sheets have to be printed separately unlike the present scenario where students have a 36 page booklet comprising both questions and space for marking answers. The recent buzz is that a tender has to be invited for printing question and answer papers which is said to be a huge lobby.
What are the shortcomings of providing separate question and answer sheets to SSLC students?
- The single page question paper is easy to leak
- Teachers face difficulty while distributing question and answer sheets separately
- Students will lose their marks if they change question paper number, which will lead to chaos during evaluation
How is OMR system good for SSLC students and evaluators?
- Students will not have any confusion regarding questions
- The 36 page booklet makes leakage impossible
- Evaluation can be carried out with ease
- Students cannot exchange their answer sheets
Undoing the method of exam that has been flawless and a nightmare for those who are involved in malpractice is not a wise decision at all. Last year, the leakage of Chemistry question paper had wreaked havoc in the life of lakhs of students. The state's secondary education and exam boards are yet come to a conclusion regarding reintroduction of the old method of SSLC exam.
The exam board has to think and act in this regard since future of close to 8 lakh students is at stake when the annual exams kick start in March 2017.