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Learning to matter more than grades

NCERT wants an annual assessment method depending on the student?s learning ability.

india Updated: Jul 17, 2006 14:53 IST

The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) wants to reduce the burden of regular unit tests on students in schools. Instead, it wants an annual assessment method depending on the student’s learning ability.

In a concept paper on assessing pupils, the NCERT speaks of formative assessment. By this, the NCERT means a system that will look to boosting the learning ability of students.

 Each step is important

*A student’s answer that the sangai deer do not get shelter during the rainy season due to the felling of trees is marked as wrong because he didn’t use the word ‘deforestation.’

*For maths, if the answer is wrong, no marks are given in India. In OECD countries, marking depends on the number of correct steps, even if the answer is wrong. If three steps are right, the student will score grade III.

The paper quotes the assessment models at school level in 49 industrialised countries in the Organisation for Economic Development and Cooperation (OECD).

It entails evaluating a student at different levels for the same problem. In OECD countries, for subjects like maths, students are evaluated at six levels depending on the answer.

“It does not reject outright a student as being poor in maths. Instead, it evaluates the mental ability of the students in solving a mathematical problem,” said an NCERT official.

Aimed at reducing stress in children, the paper says that factors like the residence of students, their social and cultural characteristics which affect learning ability, can not be ignored.