The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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After HS syllabus, questions set for revamp

Calcutta, Aug. 31: After the split in the higher secondary syllabus, question papers are in for a change.

Revision of the question pattern is necessary if the carved-up course is to be put into practice.

The new question pattern would be similar to that followed by other school education boards across the country.

The division of the HS course with separate examinations for Class XI and Class XII ' introduced by the West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education from the current academic session ' is also in tune with the system followed by other state boards and the Delhi-based Council of Indian School Certificate Examinations that conducts the ICSE and ISC examinations and the the Central Board of Secondary Examinations. There are nearly 300 ICSE and CBSE schools in the state.

HS council officials said the question papers would be revised before the Puja vacation so that nearly five lakh students, who have taken admission to Class IX in nearly 3,330 schools across Bengal this year, get enough time to practise the new pattern before appearing for the annual examination in March next year.

'Members of Boards of Studies (BOS) of 54 subjects taught in the higher secondary course are working overtime to frame the new question patterns,' Debashis Sarkar, the council secretary, said this afternoon.

The BOS are statutory bodies empowered to prepare and amend syllabi.

The council has started negotiations with the authorities of other state boards to collect samples of their questions. Their opinions are also being considered for setting the papers.

Members of the BOS ' all are experienced teachers ' are also examining the distribution of essay-type and objective questions in each subject. 'We are planning to have three types of questions ' essay-type, objective-type and a mix of the two,' said a member.

For instance, students from the science stream may have to answer more short and objective questions, whereas language and social science papers are expected to have have a larger number of essay-type questions.

Under the old system, all students had to answer mostly essay-type questions ' a system abolished by many boards across the country.

The HS council has plans to divide the 54 subjects into five groups ' language, social science, commerce, science and humanities. 'The pattern of questions will be different for each group,' an official said.

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