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CBSE, ICSE Class 12 results may go the percentile way

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CBSE and ICSE to rethink on liberal marking and grace marks

The ministry of HRD had asked the CBSE, NCERT and ICSE heads to check the feasibility of offering the class XII results in percentile score after receiving several reports of liberal marking by school Boards to give their students a competitive edge over other schools.

The ministry of HRD had held a meeting on August 3 on the practice of providing grace marks and marks moderation followed by the school boards. It was attended by CBSE chairman and the director of NCERT.

In the meeting, it was suggested that CBSE, ISCE and NCERT should form a committee to “create a sound procedure” for marks moderation that can be recommended to all Boards for the sake of “uniformity, objectivity and clarity”, as reported in Indian Express

The feasibility of indicating the percentile score along with the percentage or grades in the marks statement could also be observed. For the purpose of checking the feasibility of percentile score and marks moderation, statistics experts from the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI), IITs can be commissioned.

Difference between Percentile and Percentage

Percentage is your score divided by the maximum possible score multiplied by 100.Whereas percentile is the number of students who scored lesser marks than you divided by the total number of students who took the exam divided by 100.

A percentile score explains how well a candidate performed in comparison to other test takers, whereas a percentage score shows how well a candidate performed in the test itself. For example, a 99 percentile would mean the student scored better than 99 percent of students who took the test.

Suggestions to explore the feasibility of using percentile rank in Board were given as percentile is difficult to manipulate at the institutional level and is not affected by the awarding higher scores. Moderation of marks is commonly followed by schools and institutions for bringing uniformity in the process of evaluation. However, the practice is often blamed for the inflation of school Board results in the last few years.

For example, the number of students scoring above 95 per cent in the CBSE Class 12th examination rose 23 times in the last six years. This trend has enforced the country’s top universities to raise the eligibility bar for applicants. In 2015, two colleges affiliated to Delhi University set the eligibility bar at 100 per cent for admission to their B.Sc. (Computer Science) programme. Recently in a news, it was revealed that the CBSE awarded 16 extra marks to the candidates in this year’s Class XII Maths exam.

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