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CU bank short of questions
- Students ‘failed’ by teachers

There’s bad news for under-graduate students of Calcutta University, expecting some help from the authorities before they go about tackling a new-look question paper. There is going to be no question bank, as promised earlier by the university, to help them prepare for the exams.

Betrayed by the “poor response” from colleges, which had been asked to provide questions for the bank, the university has signalled a “modification” in its plans. “The questions we have for most subjects are grossly inadequate to fill up the bank,” a senior university official said on Thursday. “So, we are contemplating slim booklets that will be printed with a few questions,” he added.

Under-graduate students appearing for the university’s examinations from 2005 are likely to be greeted by question papers that will be markedly different from what had been set all these years. The changes, an official told Metro, were made on instructions from the University Grants Commission (UGC).

“The UGC wanted the university to bring its question papers on a par with other universities,” the official said. Consequently, every 100-mark paper in any subject is likely to have at least 20 marks allotted to objective-type questions. “The rest will be devoted to conventional, essay-type questions,” he added.

Many subjects have seen alterations in their syllabi, say officials, explaining why the papers may look “different”. “We wanted to tell examinees what to expect, which is why we drew up the question-bank plans,” they added.

Accordingly, all college principals were asked to direct every department to contribute questions, which would be collated by the university. “Each bank was to have around 50 questions of the nature the students may expect,” the official said. But the response has been disappointing. The official said: “There are too few questions to fill up a purse, leave alone a bank.”

Economics is one subject that has elicited a decent response, but here, too, the booklet will have only “model questions”, confirmed outgoing chairperson of the board of studies (economics) Soumen Sikdar. Controller of examinations O.S. Adhikari said: “We expect to overcome the teething problems.”

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