Students get a taste of open book exam

Students get a taste of open book exam

At a time when Primary and Secondary Education Minister N Mahesh hinted at experimenting open book exam for classes up to 10th, city-based Kannada Vikas Shaikshanika Samajika Samskruthika Samsthe conducted a trial for students of Nrupathunga Kannada Shaale at Ramakrishna Nagar here, so as to study the pros and cons of the system.

Mahesh had earlier clarified that open book exams will not apply for courses for which public exams are conducted such as SSLC and PUC. However, educationists have been advocating the form of exam for a couple of decades. Their argument is that the traditional exams, aided by rote-learning, are not conducive for creativity among children.

Sa Ra Sudarshan, Secretary of the samsthe, which runs the only private Kannada school in the city, said that for the first time in the state, open book exams were conducted for 150 students from 5th to 10th standard for three hours in Kannada, English, Hindi, Science and Social Science subjects. All the subjects were tried out for students of different classes to study their advantages and disadvantages,” he said.

“Open book exams are helpful to students with various capacities. Slow learners also have an advantage. It is deemed that open book exams will eliminate fear of exams among students. The students were motivated in a positive way before conducting the exam. They were told that reading textbooks or other books only during exams is not advisable. We encourage them to read books regularly. Most of the students approached the exams enthusiastically. They were happy,” he said.

The students were allowed to carry textbooks, notes and resource materials into the examination hall. They referred to the material while answering the questions which were structured to test their understanding of concepts, rather than their ability to memorise facts and figures.

President of the samsthe Pa Mallesh said, “Evaluation of the answer scripts will be qualitative. Traditional exams and the open book system will be compared. A comprehensive report, with inputs from students, will be prepared. The report will be submitted to the state government within a fortnight.” It is a wrong notion that all students will pass in the open book exam. The performance of a student depends on various factors like one’s intelligence quotient, attitude, aptitude,  concentration skills, patience, viewpoint, involvement, etc, he added.

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