The Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF), has passionately called for the cancellation of the Computer-Based Test (CBT) format in the forthcoming West African Examinations Council (WAEC) exams.
The forum believes that such mode of examination to be introduced will result in massive failure for students, particularly in rural states where computer skills are scarce or completely absent.
AYCF in a statement by its President General, Yerima Shettima firmly asserts that the CBT exams should have been optional, allowing candidates to choose between the traditional pen and paper format and the computer-based approach.
According to him, this would have given students the opportunity to opt for the format they are most comfortable with and capable of attempting successfully.
Shettima averred that research conducted by the Forum in selected northern states such as Zamfara, Jigawa, Taraba, Adamawa, Nasarawa, and Plateau reveals that the CBT exams have consistently led to misleading failure rates among students attending public schools, where computer skills are often not taught.
“Even the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) CBT exams have placed underprivileged students in a predicament, as they struggle to answer questions in a format they are unfamiliar with.
“Many students who failed the CBT-based JAMB exams last year argued that their failures were a result of systemic failures, including insufficient facilities or network failures during the exams. Additionally, a lack of proper and adequate computer skills, coupled with outdated desktop computers that are not properly maintained by CBT centers further exacerbate the situation.
“As the exams are timed, these delays significantly hinder the performance of students who otherwise possess sufficient knowledge of the content”.
In light of these findings, the AYCF urgently calls upon the Ministry of Education, Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI), Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), and other relevant Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to unite and reject the planned CBT exams.
The president general said, this decision is imperative to prevent a massive failure rate among students who deserve fair and equal opportunities for success.
“The AYCF remains committed to promoting quality education, equitable examination processes, and the overall advancement of education in Nigeria. We stand ready to work collaboratively with all stakeholders to find suitable alternatives that ensure a level playing field for all students” he stressed.
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