Open Book Exams Proposed by CBSE (for IX-XII) - Initial Run in November 2024

Published on 22nd February 2024 | 12:47 PM

Open Book Exam: The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is contemplating possibly conducting Open Book Examinations (OBE) for Classes 9 to 12 students. This is as per the recommendations of the new National Curriculum Framework, which was released the previous year. According to various sources, CBSE has proposed to pilot run the open-book tests in a few schools for English, Math, and Science for Classes 9 & 10. Similarly, English, Math, and Biology for Classes 11 & 12. The same is proposed for later this year, with the intent to evaluate the response and outcome.

The initial run will primarily focus on assessing the following in the student’’:

> Higher-order thinking skills

> Application

> Analysis

> Critical and creative thinking

> Problem-solving abilities

Based on the outcomes and experience of the initial trial run, CBSE will decide whether this form of evaluation will be adopted across all its schools (for classes 9 to 12) or not.

What is an OBE? In an open-book exam, students are permitted to carry their notes, textbooks, or any other study materials to the exam hall, and refer to them during the exam. An open-book test assesses students' understanding of a subject and ability to analyze or apply concepts. It is not merely the student’s memory noted down on the answer sheet.

Earlier in 2020 (during the pandemic), DU conducted OBE exams. A move against which students approached the Delhi High Court on the ground that it would be “discriminatory” towards those who do not have access to the Internet and infrastructure - the students from the PwD category, especially the visually challenged. However, the court later permitted DU to hold the OBE for final-year UG & PG students.

THE CBSE had previously experimented with an Open Text Based Assessment or OTBA format for the final exam of classes 9 & 11 for 3 years, from the session 2014-15 to 2016-17. However, it was scrapped based on negative feedback from stakeholders.

Last year, the CBSE curriculum committee talked about bringing in Open Book Exams (OBE) for CBSE schools. They discussed the importance of making good textbooks so students can get used to this new way of testing. In the meeting, some members suggested that teachers should try these exams first to understand them better. They want the quality of the OBE materials to be as good as the Advanced Placement exam in the US.

Keep learning, keep growing

Career Launcher!