By Gloria Eladoko
Many argue that examination is mainly a memory work and as such not everybody is endowed with the same ability to retain things in the memory, it is unfair to base assessment of ability on examination results and by inference on certificates. Some people doubt the reliability or credibility of certificates, hence; do not underrate certificates as some people tend to do, calling them “mere paper qualifications”. Notwithstanding this, students must work hard to make sure that they obtain good certificates at the end of their studies. It is a thing that every student should strive to do. Obtaining a good certificate means passing absolutely well in one’s examinations, this requires hard work.
Whatever the level of examination, to pass it is not easy. To merit a pass, students must take the following steps. First, they must prepare adequately. Preparing for an examination is usually of two ways: either you prepare yourself or you are prepared by your teacher. In the former case, you study privately as book worm, be an omnivorous reader and consult other suitable materials; while the latter case involves the typical lecturer/student relationship which is usually found in lecture halls/classes. Likewise, the lecturer being someone of superior knowledge facilitates and guides the students in learning process, while both the student and the lecturer are guided by a mapped – out course of work, usually referred to as course outline.
Moreover, students and the lecturers have to follow rigidly, the content of the course outline to make the process of teaching and learning effective, thereby, achieving the aim of passing the relevant examination. Students should note that, for them to pass an examination, they must work hard. In the first place, they must develop interest in the subjects, and the topics treated. In the second place, students must work systematically through the subject course outline and should not only know what is written in it, but should also have the knowledge of what is expected of them through careful study, making references to appropriate authorities such as the teachers guide, notes and textbooks.
A good, sincere and honest teacher is expected to know what is contained in a course outline he is expected to teach. This is because he has to base his or her lessons on the content of the course outline. Most importantly, students should note that the first step to passing an examination, as mentioned previously is to get themselves prepared; pay attention to their lecturers and to their lectures; work hard to ensure that they understand the topic, because, comprehensive understanding aids the memory to recall faster, likewise, in an examination hall. In a nutshell, pay special attention to the areas on which your lecturers lay emphasis. When you are entering an examination hall, make sure you:
Attend to the call of nature before going to examination hall.
Calm yourself before you attempt to answer any question.
Note the number of questions you are expected to answer.
Read all questions carefully and understand them.
Write the outline of answers for each question you want to answer (not on your question papers).
Make sure you carefully attempt the most understood questions as it will develop your confidence.
Avoid carelessness in your answers.
Towards the end of the examination, stop and briefly cross-check your answers and.
Obey the “stop order” of the invigilator, once the time is up.
Students should know that last minutes rush is dissatisfactory it could lead to lack of understanding the subject being studied. It could also lead to knowledge indigestion, memory lapses, lack of confidence, confusion in the examination room and eventual failure.
Inadequate preparation of candidates, by themselves or their lecturers, coupled with moral decadence in our society, has resulted in what is generally referred to as examination malpractice. Students should always be aware of the fact that examination malpractice could be any of the following.
Impersonation: someone else sitting for the actual student
Going into an examination hall with answers to some possible questions and secretly copying these answers on the answer sheet.
Exchanging answers with another student in an examination hall.
Assisting a student, in any manner, with answers to the examination question and other behaviors which contravene the normal code of conduct expected of students in an examination hall.
Students should as much as possible avoid all the aforementioned offences and other examination malpractices because, anyone caught in any malpractice usually, sooner or later, finds himself face to face with the rough side of the senate disciplinary committee which in most cases, eventually leads to untimely termination of the student’s programme of study. Naturally, students fail the examinations lose self-confidence, self-respect and, consequently, cause their parents a great pain.. Of a truth, it is better for a student to fail a course and repeat it than to be involved in the above listed or other disastrous effects of examination malpractice.
Gloria Eladoko is a 400 level student, Department of Mass Communication, Bayero University, Kano.