CBSE Class 10 maths exam to have two test paper options
Students appearing for the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) Class 10 board exams in 2019 are likely to have the option to choose whether to answer a standard-level or the existing-level mathematics question paper, officials familiar with the development said. The choice will have to be made when forms for the exam are filled up later this year, they added.
On May 31, HT had reported that the CBSE was considering two sets of question papers for the mathematics exam. The syllabus for the exam would remain the same; but students would be examined at two different levels so that those not keen to pursue maths for higher studies can answer a simpler question paper.
Officials added that this may start as a pilot project from March 2019 itself and, depending on its success, could be extended to the Class 12 board exams. The board has formed a 15-member committee comprising mathematics experts, and those from universities, schools and the National Council of Educational Research and Training.
“The National Curriculum Framework (NCF) document states that all subjects should be examined at two levels by the board, beginning with maths and English. It also said that students should have the choice between higher and standard level,” said a maths expert who was consulted.
The officials cited above further said that the committee had suggested to keep the syllabus same, including teaching and pedagogy, but the same syllabus would be examined at two levels.
An official said the higher-level paper would have more questions on applied mathematics and involve higher order thinking skills. The board had received representations to introduce two question papers from several schools across the country. The rationale was that students who do not intend to pursue maths would be able to avoid the tag they weren’t good at the subject if they scored low marks at the high-school level.
A number of school boards overseas follow this practice. For instance, the Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education has a core curriculum in each subject, which is generally within the ability range of a majority of the students. It also offers an extended curriculum that is designed for students who are more academically able. International Baccalaureate (IB) also provides this flexibility.