Scoring format for JAMB 2017 CBT EXAM and SCREENING
Few weeks after the Federal Government scrapped the post-Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) as a prerequisite for admission into universities in the country, the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has released a new grading system for the 2016/2017 session.
In the new system candidates seeking admission into universities would be awarded points according to their scores in JAMB and performance at the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE] and Senior School Certificate Examination conducted by the National Examinations Council (NECO).
Points that would accrue to candidates, according to the official grading system released by the body, are as follows:
JAMB SCORE GRADE POINTS
180 – 185 —————— 20 points
186 – 190———————— 21points
191 – 195————————- 22points
196 – 200———————– 23points
201 – 205———————– 24points
206 – 210——————— 25 points
211 – 215———————– 26 points
216 – 220———————— 27 points
221 – 225———————— 28 points
226 – 230———————— 29 points
231 – 235———————— 30 points
236 – 240———————– 31 points
241 – 245———————– 32 points
246 – 250———————— 33 points
251 – 300—————— 34- 43points
300 – 400————— 44–60 points
As stated in the new grading system, candidates that had single sitting of WASSCE or NECO SSCE would be awarded 10 points, while those that had their results at more than one sitting would score only 2 points. Also students with A1 in subjects offered at the SSCE would score six points, B2 and B3 would garner four points, while C4 – C6 would be graded three points. The new system has tended to collapse the admission process into one though the universities will still decide the cut off marls for various courses.
Reacting to the new development, the Vice President, Association of African Universities (AAU), Prof Olusola Oyewole, said the Committee of Vice Chancellors would study the development and make its positions clear at the right time. He said it would be too early to judge the new policy even when it has not been implemented to ascertain how fair it would be to the university system.
Oyewole, who is also the Vice Chancellor, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), said the policy has to be studied before further comments.
The decision to scrap post-UTME was reached at the 2016 Combined Policy Meeting on Admissions to Universities, Polytechnics and other higher institutions in Nigeria. The Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, while declaring open the meeting, said since the federal government and stakeholders had confidence in the examinations conducted by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, there was no need for other screening examinations by universities.
Reactions poured in torrents across the country. Some described the decision as a drawback to the concerted efforts to improve the quality of students admitted into the nation’s universities, while others hailed the decision as one that would restore the autonomy of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB).
Seasoned educationist and Proprietor of Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti (ABUAD), Aare Afe Babalola, (SAN), described the decision as a regrettable mistake, noting that many of the students admitted into Nigerian universities through JAMB were not only academically deficient but also unfit to justify the high marks scored in JAMB examinations.
Also, former Vice Chancellor, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Prof Tolu Odugbemi, held similar opinion. He said the decision to scrap the post-UTME without proper research was ill-conceived and utterly worrisome. He maintained that universities should have the right to admit suitable students based on relevant and objective criteria.
Former Vice Chancellor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University (Unizik), Awka, Prof Boniface Egboka, said the emplacement of the post-UTME was widely discussed in the public and accepted for use by Nigerian universities.
He noted that large number of students pass JAMB exam every year, but further screening often reveal that they were not qualified. He argued that conducting the post-UTME allowed universities to select the best out of the mammoth candidates.
A contrary view was expressed by the former Vice Chancellor, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Niger State, Prof. Ibrahim Kolo, who warned that Nigeria cannot allow itself to veer off the lane of international best practices in educational development. He said the credibility of examinations conducted by the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has improved remarkably over the years, which had over-ruled the essence of further post-UTME tests by various universities.
Kolo explained that the use of external monitors, security agencies, paper and computer test approach, and n computer based test (CBT) had greatly improved the quality and reliability of the results of JAMB examination.
“Indeed JAMB has taken the lead already in adopting measures to overcome genuine challenges associated with the use of technology for ease of public transactions in Nigeria while encouraging other public examinations to begin the CBT approach. The problem with us is that we are most often not patient enough to allow innovations to work, even when it is in tandem with international best practices”, he said.
When contacted on phone on the new process put in place by JAMB, the PRO of University of Nigeria, Nsukka Chief Okwun Omeaku, said that the university authorities met on Monday before the Sallah break to deliberate on the new point mode of admission.
He said that they would reconvene by next Monday before issuing a statement on it, saying that the institution has no choice than to obey the new directive.
Chief Omeaku also said that the new admission mode is fantastic as it would eliminate fraud as well as ensure that the best-qualified candidates get admission.
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