NCERT lays down minimum learning outcomes for secondary

Last Updated 28 June 2019, 15:25 IST

The National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has now laid down subject-wise minimum learning outcomes (MLOs) for the students of classes IX and X, hoping to improve the quality of school education and end rote learning.

According to this, at the end of their academic year, students of classes IX and X should be able to solve unfamiliar problems in Mathematics using theories, concepts and formulas that they studied in their respective classes.

In Science subject, secondary students should acquire the ability to use “the methods and processes of science,” such as observing, questioning, planning investigations, hypothesizing, collecting, analysing and interpreting data, communicating explanations with evidence, justifying explanations, thinking critically to consider and evaluate alternative explanation.

The draft MLOs for English, Hindi, Urdu, Sanskrit, Science, Mathematics, Social Science, Health and Physical Education, and Art Education will soon be given a final shape and notified after incorporating suggestions from the stakeholders.

The students must also imbibe “the values” of honesty, integrity, cooperation, concern for life and preservation of the environment as well as “develop respect” for human dignity and rights, equity and equality by the time they complete the academic year of their respective classes.

In 2017, the NCERT laid down subject-wise and class-wise MLOs for elementary students (classes I to VII), which was made part of Right to Education (RTE) Act.

The MLOs for secondary classes have been laid down to fine-tune the process of schooling to provide enabling conditions to children to learn and progress “in a stress-free environment”.

“More often, the teachers are not clear about what kind of learning is desired and the criteria against which the learning of children could be assessed. The completion of textbooks is often considered as the finishing point of the syllabus. Multiple pedagogies suiting dissimilar contexts are not adopted due to the lack of explicit criteria to assess them,” the NCERT director Hrushikesh Senapaty said.

The “complexity” of the subjects that students learn increases at the secondary level.

“Further, the children have to appear in Board examinations at the end of class X. As each State has a different examination board, syllabi and content, it becomes all the more important to have well-defined criteria, in terms of learning outcomes, which can guide the children and teachers as well as appraise and ensure accountability of different stakeholders,” he added.

The MLOs have been laid down with an inclusive approach.

“Care has been taken to prepare learning outcomes keeping in mind the children with special needs,” the NCERT chief also said.

The 137-page draft MLOs not just specifies curricular expectations from the students but also provides a suggestive list of “pedagogical processes” for the teachers.

“Teachers will have the flexibility to adopt, adapt as even modify the pedagogical processes as per the context and resource availability. The pedagogical processes have an inbuilt component of assessment which may help the teachers to assess the learning of students,” the NCERT chief added.

(Published 28 June 2019, 13:50 IST)

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