Arewa youths predict widespread failure in the North due to WASSCE CBT

Abolition of Computer-Based Test Structure Criticized by Arewa Youth Consultative Forum

The Arewa Youth Consultative Forum has voiced its opposition to the planned implementation of a computer-based test (CBT) structure for the upcoming West African Senior School Certificate Examinations in the country.

Concerns in Rural Areas

One of the main points of contention raised by the forum is the potential for mass failure among pupils, particularly in rural areas of northern states.

In these regions, where computer capabilities are either non-existent or severely limited, the adoption of a computer-based testing format is seen as a significant challenge for students.

Advocacy for Optional CBT Exams

AYCF National President Yerima Shettima emphasized that the CBT exams should have been optional, providing applicants with the choice to opt for either the computer-based technique or the traditional pen-and-paper format.

In a statement issued in Kaduna, Shettima argued that such flexibility would have allowed students to select the format that best suited their needs and abilities.

Negative Impact on Student Performance

Shettima further contended that studies conducted by the Forum in several northern states, including Zamfara, Jigawa, Taraba, Adamawa, Nasarawa, and Plateau, revealed a consistent negative impact of CBT exams on false failure rates in public schools.

The absence of computer literacy education in these institutions was identified as a contributing factor.

Challenges Faced by Underprivileged Students

Highlighting the challenges faced by underprivileged students, especially in the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board CBT exams, Shettima pointed out that unfamiliarity with the CBT format placed them in a predicament.

Many students who failed the CBT-based JAMB exams cited systemic failures such as insufficient facilities, network issues during exams, and a lack of proper computer skills exacerbated by outdated and poorly maintained desktop computers at CBT centers.

Call for Action to Ensure Equal Opportunities

To prevent a high percentage of students from failing due to systemic challenges, Shettima emphasized the need for immediate action.

The call is grounded in the principle of providing fair and equal opportunities for students to succeed, particularly in the face of disparities in computer literacy and infrastructure across different regions.

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