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Cracking the career test

CBSE will help students make better career and study choices by introducing aptitude tests, becoming first board in India to do so. But parents, students say tests without counselling sessions will serve no purpose, reports Yashshri Soman.

mumbai Updated: Jun 08, 2010 01:45 IST
Yashshri Soman
Yashshri Soman
Hindustan Times

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is preparing to introduce an aptitude test for its students in affiliated schools this year.

The test, piloted last November in all affiliated Mumbai schools in Class 9, aims to help students decide which subjects, linked to their interests, could be their strengths and career options. This year, more than 5,000 students took the Class 10 CBSE exam.

“We are speaking to experts and counsellors to firm up the test’s content,” a CBSE official from Delhi told Hindustan Times. The official said a final announcement would be made this month. If the plan fructifies, CBSE will be the first board to introduce a standardised aptitude test. Most schools affiliated to other boards conduct their own aptitude tests.

“The results of the test could be used by students to choose their stream in Class 11 as CBSE has made Class 10 board exams optional,” said Vrinda Malse, principal of Navy Children School at Navy Nagar.

The pilot test had three parts. One part had multiple-choice questions on different subjects, general knowledge and current affairs. The second required students to choose their preferred subjects from a given list. The third asked students to state the subjects they thought they were good at and tested soft skills such as leadership qualities, logical and analytical reasoning.

Students, who took the pilot test last November, got their results in April. “The pilot test helped me crystallise what I was good at,” said Sudarshan Vijay (14). The test confirmed his interest lay in physics, chemistry and economics. “As it was conducted by the board, it had a certain level of credibility. This may help me choose my subjects in Class 11.”

However, not everyone is convinced. “My daughter is not ready to accept the stated weaknesses in the results,” said Mridula Malhotra. “The test will work only if students understand their strengths and work on weaknesses.”

First Published: Jun 08, 2010 01:44 IST