The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has issued text and pictorial study material for the Open Text Based Assessment (OTBA) on Tuesday, October 1, 2013. The open book examinations will be held by CBSE-affiliated schools.
CBSE acts as the board of education for public as well as private schools and holds final examinations for Classes 10 and 12. It is also responsible to hold the All India Pre Medical Test (AIPMT) and All India Engineering Entrance Examination (AIEEE) examinations annually for admission into undergraduate (UG) courses in architecture, engineering and medical colleges.
OTBA will be held for students of Classes IX and XI only and will be included in the final examinations which are held in March. For Class IX, the OTBA study material has been issued for all major subjects such as Mathematics, English, Science, Hindi and Social Science. For Class XI, it has been issued for Economics, Geography and Biology. OTBA will cover only these subjects this year.
Students will have access to study material few months prior to OTBA, which they can refer later while writing the test. Each school is required to prepare its individual question paper. As per CBSE, the format of OTBA will not weaken the examination process itself.
As per CBSE officials, OTBA’s questions will cover higher order thinking skills (HOTS) and few of these might be either creative, open ended or subjective. The study material will be derived from the syllabus. The types of content might be articles, diagrams, case studies, pictures or cartoon, concept/mind maps, problems or situations on the basis of concepts covered during the second term, etc. Material for each subject will consist of 12-18 pages, classified into 2 themes, which are not only relevant to the syllabi, but also to current events. Concept of Mathematics discusses area and distance with the help of a garden layout.
CBSE has revised its marks distribution pattern so that OTBA scores can be included in the main subject marks. For Summative Assessment-II (SA-II), question papers of main subjects will be for 90 marks, out of which 70 marks will be allotted to English and 20 marks for speaking and listening skills assessment. Question paper of each main subject will contain a separate section consisting of 10 marks assigned for OTBA. The OTBA section will have text material along with a maximum of 3 questions related to this text.
Questions related to the text will cover HOTS, for which students need to analyze specific situations mentioned in the report/article/case study and draw conclusions from them. The text-based questions are expected to be analytical, open-ended, inference related and will need personalized answers with justifications.
As per CBSE officials, teachers should hold interactive sessions with students further analyzing the study material, so that the main purpose of OTBA, which is to move students away from the habit of learning by heart, is served. This will encourage students to acquire various skills of comprehension, analysis, information processing and inference, the officials added.
Source: The Times of India
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