CBSE Open book exam

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In the recent years, there have been revolutionary changes in the education system. With the changes in the JEE entrance system being formalized this year, another pioneering change is on the anvil by CBSE. It has been proposed that it will introduce the Open Book exam for classes 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th in the academic session 2013-14.

CBSE Open book exam

CBSE Open book exam

Understanding more about CBSE Open Book Exam

In Canada, UK and USA, open book exams are a norm in many schools and universities. Basically, it allows the students to carry their text books to the exam and lets them consult the books to answer the various questions. However, there are no direct questions and unless understanding of the subject is good, you might end up with low marks.

As per the proposals by CBSE, the main idea behind implementation of Open Book examination is to inculcate the habit of reading, understanding and doing away completely with the rote learning patterns as prevalent today. Though the prevalence of open book examination is well-known abroad, this is the first time that such pioneering changes have been proposed in India. Though formal announcements have not yet been done, the new pattern of examinations is supposed to be made official by the end of the year 2013.

It is said that the CBSE will send out formally the chapters that would constitute the examination and all questions would be coming from the specified chapters. This would be a separate section and would carry 20% weightage in the total marks.

Purpose of Open Book Examination

As per the proposed format, open book examination will help the students learn how to quickly look for information, understand and analyze it, apply their knowledge and that will in turn enhance critical thinking. However, the students will not be given permission to carry the books inside the exam hall. But the separate section in the question paper will have a set of questions based on the pre-defined case studies which is relevant to that specific subject.

To ensure that there are no discrepancies in the examination, all the students will be informed about the chapters and paragraphs that are relevant to the new pattern at least 4 months in advance so they are well-prepared to answer all analytical text questions. Currently for 12th class, this specific examination format is for Economics, geography, one language and Biology while for classes 9th, 10th and 11th it will be formulated for all subjects. In case, students are thinking this might be easier than the regular exam pattern, think again. Most of the questions that are set in an open book exam usually ask the students to evaluate, explain and compare from the given text. Thus, better understanding and critical analysis skills are a must.


Gajanan Sapate

Apart from being an IITian (IIT K), I am a thinker, observer and a blogger by passion. I like to write about the user behavior, education and students concerns.

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