Moderation, grace marks or something else? What explains the abundance of 95% marks in CBSE Board results

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New Delhi | Updated: June 4, 2018 5:09:33 PM

In the Class 12 results, around 70,000 students scored 90 percent and more, which is around 14% higher than the previous year.

There is still no clarity on whether moderation has been totally abandoned or not (IE)

The announcement of this year’s result of High school and senior secondary level by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has once again created the usual buzz around the marking scheme being followed by the education board. The number of students scoring above 90 percent marks is also high and many people are questioning the moderation and the grace-marking policy of the CBSE.

Of around 28 lakh students that had appeared for the CBSE exam in 2018, more than 16 lakh students appeared for Class 10 exams and more than 11 lakh students had appeared for Class 12. The pass percentage for class 10 is 86.70%.

The board had conducted Class 10 examination from March 5 to April 4, whereas Class 12 board examinations were held between March 5 and April 13. The CBSE Class 12 Board Exam results were declared by the board on May 26, 2018 and class 10 result on May 29.

Last year, the results were delayed due to marks moderation policy, which the CBSE wanted to discontinue, but the Delhi High Court ordered it to continue with it and suggested that the board implement changes from next year (2018). The CBSE officials have said that this year’s (2018) result does not consist the moderation scheme, but they said that ‘grace marks’ have been awarded, a vague procedure that analysts have questioned.

This policy too is also not convincing many, The Indian Express reported. Quoting data from an analyst website, there is a pattern being found in marks this year too. Quoting Prashant Bhattacharji, the founder of LearningPoint.Net, the report stated that while analyzing scoring trends for three subjects, LearningPoint found that 95 was the single most frequent score of Mathematics, Business Studies and Accountancy.

It also found that 95 is the most frequent score for Mathematics among 39,637 students out of around 5,00,328 students analyzed. For Business Studies, 20,186 students scored 95 out of 3,07,327 students analyzed.

In the Class 12 results, around 70,000 students scored 90 percent and more, which is around 14% higher than the previous year.

However, the question of high marks being awarded by the board becomes pertinent in the backdrop of several concerns raised, Prashant Bhattacharji said, “As there are no exact moderation rules, there is random falsifying of marks, which has also happened this year. This is despite the fact that the Ministry of HRD and the CBSE had said there will be no moderation,” The Indian Express reported.

In 2013, Prashant had analyzed the results of 7 lakh students. The trend had then showed an abnormally large percentage of 95 percent scorers.

While there is still no clarity on whether moderation has been totally abandoned or not, the other side of the picture tells a different story. When many celebrated the ‘bright’ 90-plus club, the country witnessed suicides. After the announcements of Class 10 results, Delhi witnessed three suicides till May 30. As per various media reports, the reason for ending the life was low marks in the examination.

Moreover, the board had introduced the Comprehensive and Continuous Evaluation (CCE) scheme from 2010 academic session, with an aim to make education more holistic. However it was discontinued in class 10 from 2017 because of several issues revolving around the scheme, one being the quality of education. The moderation policy of the board is to compensate the students for facing difficulties in solving the paper like misinterpretation or ambiguity etc. It also aims to bring ‘uniformity’ in the evaluation procedure.

Last year, many were amused when there were huge differences found in the revaluation. The Hindustan Times reported about two cases when the original Mathematics scores stood at 68 and 42, increased to 95 and 90 respectively after revaluation. Another incident was reported from Mumbai when the original score of 50 marks increased to 90 after marks verification.

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