Arewa Youths: WAEC Clears Air Over Exam, Says Computer-Based Testing Model For Private Candidates


The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) on Monday explained that the planned Computer-Based Testing model for the conduct of the 2024 examination was only scheduled for private candidates.

The regional examination body cleared the air that the CBT examination mode would not be used for general school candidates.

The Acting Head, Public Affairs of WAEC Nigeria, Moyosola Adesina, disclosed this in a statement made available to EDUCATION ROADMAP.

Recall that WAEC had on November 13 announced that it had dumped the paper and pencil test model and had adopted the Computer-Based Test mode for the conduct of the Senior School Certificate Examination.

Reacting to the report, the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum called for the cancellation of the proposed Computer-Based Test format in the forthcoming West African Examinations Council examinations in the country.

The forum argued that introducing such a mode of examination will result in mass failure for students, particularly in rural areas where computer skills are scarce or completely absent.

However, Adesina, in the statement explained that contrary to speculations that the CBT model would be adopted for all categories of exams to be conducted by the council in 2024, it would only introduce the CBT model for private candidates examination.

The statement noted that the council was aware of the infrastructural deficit that may undermine the successful implementation of the CBT across all its examination centres in Nigeria which was why it restricted the CBT model to private candidates who were majorly drawn from urban areas.

The statement read, “The attention of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has been drawn to a media report stating that a youth forum has called for the
rejection of the planned Computer Based West African Senior School Certificate Examination (CB-WASSCE) for Private Candidates – First Series, 2024.

“The said examination is to be conducted by WAEC Nigeria and is scheduled to be held between January 31 and February 17, 2024. The agitation for the rejection of the CB-WASSCE was in response to an earlier media report in which WAEC purportedly announced that it had ditched the Paper and Pencil Testing model and had adopted the Computer Based Testing model for the conduct of the School Candidates’ Examination.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the West African Examinations Council hereby states unequivocally, that it had never announced the adoption of the Computer Based Testing model for the conduct of the WASSCE for School Candidates, 2024.

“Therefore, the media report under reference is false and misleading.

“Recall that a Press Release was issued in November 2023 stating that plans had been concluded for WAEC Nigeria to conduct its first-ever examination using the Computer Based Testing model in the upcoming WASSCE for Private Candidates- First Series, 2024.

“Furthermore, in an interview published by Punch Newspaper on November 30, 2023, the Head of National Office, WAEC Nigeria, Dr Amos Josiah Dangut, confirmed that the Computer Based Testing model would not be applied to the WASSCE for School Candidates just yet.

“He stated that there was still a lot to be done to equip schools with the needed infrastructure, resources and adequately trained manpower to engage and cooperate with WAEC for the conduct of CBWASSCE for School Candidates. He also clarified that the introduction of CB-WASSCE is currently exclusive to the First Series of the Private Candidates’ examination which, since its inception, has been conducted in urban areas.

“WAEC has on several platforms, outlined the mode for taking the upcoming CB-WASSCE and put measures in place to ensure that candidates, the examination environment and the general public are adequately sensitised on the requirements and outlay for the examination. Candidates are hereby reminded that all Multiple Choice (Objective) questions will be delivered
(posted) and answered on the computer while Essay (Theory and Practical) questions will be delivered (posted) on screen, for candidates to answer questions of their choice in the provided Answer Booklets.

“Meanwhile, the Council is not unaware of possible challenges that may be encountered by candidates during the conduct of the examination.

“To this end, a trial test and a free mock examination have been scheduled to take place on WAEC’s designated platforms for prospective candidates, whether secondary school students or out-of-school individuals, to familiarise themselves with the testing environment, before the commencement of the WASSCE for Private Candidates – First Series, 2024.

“Notification for the mock examination will be sent to prospective candidates through their emails.

“Announcements for the scheduled mock examination will also be made through mainstream and new media.

“In addition, candidates are
also advised to visit WAEC Nigeria’s website and social media spaces for relevant information and guidelines on how to navigate the CB-WASSCE platform.

“WAEC Nigeria has engaged the services of CBT centres across the Country and checked their suitability to host candidates for the CB-WASSCE, throughout its duration. Some candidates will be assigned to sit the examination at designated WAEC Branch and Zonal Offices, for administrative purposes.

“As an organisation that prioritises excellence, innovation and professionalism as its core values, the general public can be assured that WAEC would not compromise its standard on quality assessment and global best practices, to ensure the smooth conduct of the WASSCE for Private Candidates-FirstSeries, 2024.

The statement added, “As Africa’s foremost examining body, providing qualitative and reliable educational assessment, it is the vision of WAEC, to show its publics and
stakeholders, the great potential that exist in adopting the Computer-based approach to secondary school assessments in general. WAEC welcomes the cooperation of all to achieve this great mandate.”


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