In the last one year, there have been significant changes in the Indian education sector. One such change includes the introduction and implementation of the Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) for class IX students by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).
According to CCE, the class IX term will be divided into two semesters. For each of the two semesters, respective examinations will be conducted. In this academic session, since more than half of the session has already been completed, schools are required to conduct only the second semester examinations. But starting 2010-2011 session, both semesters will be followed and examinations held. The papers for the CCE examinations will be set by the board.
With not enough sample papers to follow, teachers and students are not clear about the examination pattern, mode of assessment, and so on. Further, while teachers are confused about how to examine and mark students, students are apprehensive because of the lack of study material provided by CBSE. Though CBSE has recently issued one sample paper (for each subject) for the 2010 class IX exam, it is not enough and students are finding it difficult to comprehend the pattern that is to be followed.
Says Vishvesh Varma, a class IX student from Modern School, Barakhamba Road, “We haven’t yet got the date sheet, which is why we are finding it difficult to plan. Further, within a short span of two months (January and February), we are not only expected to complete the formatives and various projects, but also prepare for our summative 2. For this, the board has prescribed the syllabus and has posted sample papers on the internet, but the questions are all application based, which requires thorough revision of the NCERT textbooks. After completing our textbooks for our summative 2 there will be no time left to refer to other books. The lack of exposure to questions of a different format is a cause for concern."
However, educationists feel that CCE is going to be an advantage for students in the long run. Neeta Kapoor, English teacher from Tagore International School, points out, “CCE would reduce the pressure on students and help them move away from rote-learning.” Besides, the CCE pattern is more comprehensive and practical in its approach. While on the one hand it is supposed to identify learning progress of students at regular intervals on small portions of content, it also employs remedial measures of teaching based on learning needs and potential of each student. Other components include involving learners actively in the learning process and recognising abilities of students in areas other than academics.
A few publishers like Oswaal Books have launched a series comprising CBSE sample papers along with five ‘additional’ sample papers. According to the publishers, experienced teachers from CBSE schools across the country have prepared the papers. “The books will assist teachers to carry out formative assessment of students,” says Prashant Jain, head (marketing), Oswaal Books. Available in English and Hindi, the books are priced at Rs 49 and are also available online www.books4u.in