Re-evaluation of Art answer sheets paints a different picture

Process held in the last week of June after 2,198 students out of 2,470 who took the CET in May were declared ineligible for admissions

There seems to be no end to the controversies courted by the new academic reforms introduced by the state, and the latest to join the ranks is the Common Entrance Test (CET) for Art.

Students protest holding placards condemning the first evaluation process
Students protest holding placards condemning the first evaluation process 

Authorities and the students were left dumbstruck when the re-valuation process sprung a surprise after most of the students, who were declared failed cleared the test, and the marks of a few who had scored highly were reduced to mere passing.

The re-evaluation process was conducted in the last week of June after 2,198 students out of 2,470 who appeared for the CET in May were declared ineligible for admissions. Stunned after scoring poor marks, 138 students demanded re-evaluation. However, the process commenced only after state education minister intervened.

“Most of us got less marks in memory drawing and design. How can a student score 2/50 if he/she has completed the drawing? This was unacceptable,” said one student, who is now happy to gain eligibility for a painting course.

Another student, who also applied for re-evaluation and is happy with the outcome, said, “While a few of the students are happy that their marks have increased, others are unhappy at the dip in their marks. Now these students are challenging the re-evaluation process.”

Official word
Speaking to mid-day, Dr Rajiv Mishra, director of the Directorate of Art, said, “After the results were declared, we received requests from over 130 applicants seeking re-evaluation. After consulting the experts and the education minister, decision was taken to go ahead with the re-evaluation process. The difference in the evaluation done by two different committees of examiners turned out to be massive. So it was decided to re-evaluate all the answer sheets following which a new merit list was displayed.”

Explaining the difference in evaluation process by the two different committees, Mishra said that the CET comprises four subjects — object drawing, memory drawing, design and general knowledge. “Evaluation of these subjects (other than general knowledge) is a subjective act. There are no modal answer to set a benchmark. Regardless of not having set answers, the difference in evaluation by two examiners shouldn’t be this vast,” he added.

Old list scrapped
After a new merit list was declared on July 2, candidates who had secured admissions during the first round of Common Admission Process (CAP) lost their seats due to cancellation of the first CAP round. Now, a new timetable for admissions has been uploaded by the directorate on its official website.

Santosh Gangurde, a student union leader who helped the grieving students, said, “CETs were introduced to ensure transparency so that the merit isn’t compromised. But what has baffled us most is the casual approach of the authorities. How can they forget that careers of thousands of students depend on them?”

Another activist, Vijeta Bhonkar from Vidyarthi Bharati, said, “When students initially complained, authorities brushed it aside by claiming that a ruckus is being created by those who had failed. Different students’ unions joined hands and pressurised the authorities to initiate re-valuation.”

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