Saturday, November 25, 2017

Education Secretary Hossain suggests removing multiple choice questions from board exams

  • Senior Correspondent
    Published: 2017-09-12 17:43:12 BdST


Multiple choice questions should no longer be part of SSC and HSC exams, Md Sohrab Hossain, secretary of the Secondary and Higher Education Division, has suggested.

“We have received reports that sometimes the invigilator is convinced by a school to ensure that all examinees get 30 out of 30 marks in the MCQ part. Some teachers provide pass marks to students in return for bribes,” said the secretary in defence of his suggestion.

“We have often seen that a student gets above 80 marks in all subjects but he failed in one because of getting less than 10 out of 30 marks allocated for multiple choice questions,” he said at a programme at the secretariat on Tuesday where six latest edition science books of grades IX and X were handed over.

“This is completely my personal view. We will sit with you in future to discuss the matter,” he said addressing the educationists present at the ceremony.

The education ministry has already cut down the MCQ part in Secondary School Certificate and Higher Secondary Certificate exams to 30 questions amid widespread allegations of question leaks.

The section now carries 10 marks less thus pushing up marks allocated for the rest (subjective part) to 70.

Students are made to fill up the MCQ sheets at the beginning of the board exams to cut down the risks of question leaks.

Noting that not even the chairman of the education board gets to see the question papers, Hossain said: “We are severely criticised at times. It has been alleged that ministers, secretaries and top brass officials sell out questions.”

The ministry is thinking of printing question papers inside exam centres right before the start of exams, he added.

The secretary also cited an incident of RAJUK Uttara Model College which the Dhaka Education Board is currently investigating.

“Ten students failed there because they got 7/8 out of 30 in MCQs. They said their copies were snatched away by the teacher.

“We have ordered the Dhaka board to look into the matter. To see if they got eight out of 10 or eight out of 30; and also why the copies were snatched away. Because none of these students are poor in studies,” Secretary Hossain said.

The draft of Education Act, which has been in the making for six years now, is almost ready to reach the cabinet, he added.

“It may be produced at the cabinet this week. It has some complex parts.”