The West African Examinations Council says it is working on sensitising and training its staff on key areas of technology deployment in order to improve its operations in 2018.
The council’s Head, National Office (HNO), Mr Olu Adenipekun said the council has organised series of retreats for all categories of staff. “We have worked hard in sensitising the workforce of the council and prepare their minds because it is one thing for one to strive to do something. But if the people that drive the system are not attuned psychologically, all such efforts will be fruitless.
“So, we want to prepare our psyche on the need to sharpen our tools in preparation to move over to a 100 per cent technologically driven WAEC and of course we have done that and we are going full blast,’’ he told NAN.
On the possibility of introducing Computer Based Test (CBT) platform for its examination, Adenipekun said that the CBT is not limited to any particular examination body. WAEC also has a section called the Aptitude Test department that can equally use the CBT platform in conducting examination for candidates.
He, however, said that the mandate of WAEC makes it difficult to embrace CBT fully, as it was different from that of other examination bodies like JAMB.
“It will interest you to know that WAEC conducts achievement tests to ascertain the level of achievement of a candidate or student after attending secondary school for a six-year period. So, if you want to test knowledge for English Language for instance, we do so without bringing about any complications.
“We are aware of the operational environment. WAEC examination is not a selection test, it is an achievement test and so in doing that, we will have to deploy all facilities available to ensure that we help that particular candidate to prove himself or herself,’’ he said.
Adenipekun explained that it would be unfair to subject a candidate to the CBT if such a student had not been exposed to the use of a computer in any form for the six years he had been attending school.
“So what we are then doing as an organisation and as part of our step forward is to come out and encourage state governors, school owners, communities, individuals and of course the generality of education stakeholders on the need to see how we can encourage secondary schools.
“Once we are able to identify schools that are favourably disposed to this and we are convinced that they can meet our terms, we will start looking in the direction of introducing them to some aspects of our examinations which is the objective questions, which can be done on the CBT platform to start with.
“We have some papers that have three components and others two. Those with two components, objective and essay and for schools that are ready for CBT, we should be able within the next two years to encourage them to present their candidates,’’ Adenipekun said.