Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 17 April 2024 4.52 PM IST

Exam credibility secured with decisive action


The credibility of any test lies in its administration. Flawless examination procedures are essential for free and fair selection whether it is an examination related to education or a competitive examination for a job. New and innovative methods are adopted to prevent many irregularities in competitive examinations including question paper leakage, but it cannot be said that they have been completely successful. With the abundance of sophisticated communication systems, conducting a completely flawless exam is a huge challenge. Even in the most prestigious competitive examinations in the country, despite strict precautions, leakages and malpractices still occur.

When the decision was taken to move the state's engineering entrance exam online, the government was not clear on who should be entrusted with the task. The entrance examination authorities and the higher education department were thinking of seeking the services of private companies because they felt inadequate or lacked confidence in the government system. A tender was called for that. Naturally, there was opposition to handing over the engineering entrance exam, which was written by more than 100,000 students, to a private company. It is a fact that there are many private companies in the country that have proven proficiency and experience in conducting such examinations. However, the question was raised why go after private companies when there is a government system right next door.

Perhaps because of the realization that this question has merit, it has now been decided to hand over the engineering entrance exam to the government body C-DIT. This decision helps to avoid unnecessary criticism and future complaints. C-DIT is the institution which has taken up the responsibility of some important examinations including MBA entrance examination. They also have the necessary software for this. With more than lakhs of students taking the engineering entrance exam, there is a downside that it may take a few days to complete the exam. Software changes may also be required. However, there is hope that the government institution will be able to maintain the confidentiality of the entrance exam.

Although it may be counterargued that question paper leaks also happen in government-directed examinations, government institutions are always at the forefront in gaining public trust. In terms of cost, however, the government is going to get a huge profit from C-DIT. It is reported that C-DIT will not require even a quarter of the rates offered by private companies.

In case the decision has been taken to hand over the entrance exam to C-DIT, the next step is to quickly complete the necessary preparations. It will not take much time to declare the results after the plus two exam is over in March. By then it was time for the entrance exam. Necessary preparations have to be planned in advance considering that it cannot be completed at once.

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