The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has planned to introduce Computer Based Tests (CBT) mode in the administration of its examinations. Head of the national office, Mr. Patrick Areghan, gave the hint in an interview with newsmen in Lagos yesterday.
Areghan, who spoke against the backdrop of notable achievements and advancements of the council under his watch as he prepares to leave office on October 1, said introducing the CBT mode of administrating examinations had been part of his vision for the body.
“We have already started something in terms of CBT examinations. We have gone far with our planning and all of that, even in the sub-region, the registrar to the council is also doing something. But this is not as easy as some people will think. This is because we ask ourselves, how do we conduct CBT for practicals and essay papers?
“We can only readily do that in the case of objective questions. But so many people will not see it from that angle. They argue that some others are doing it, so why can’t WAEC do the same? Now, no one even talks about energy; how many schools are exposed to computer literacy? How many have computer facilities and how many have electricity to run these things?
“Even where you have all these things on the ground, how do you handle the issue of theory and practical papers? So, these are the issues, but that is what I want the council to do very shortly. We should be able to conduct CBT examinations even if it means starting with the objective questions,” he said.
The outgoing WAEC head noted that already, the council had concluded introducing the administration of its examinations using the CBT platform under his watch, in no distant time, starting with the objective questions and later theory and practicals.
“But you can still be sure that not all schools will be ready. Maybe we can have a segregated market. Those who cannot afford the CBT will go for the pencil and paper mode. So, I would like to see WAEC in that light,” he said. Areghan said aside from the introduction of the CBT, he would also like to see all the operations of the council fully digitised shortly.