The CBSE Class XII Physics question paper left students in the State in a tizzy on Monday.
Students and parents expressed concern over the difficulty level of the examination paper, alleging that even multiple-choice questions took up a sizeable chunk of their time.
Devananda C.M., a student of Kendriya Vidyalaya, Pattom, said she was left with just half an hour to attempt to five-mark questions. Similarly, the two-mark questions took up more than the average time they would have taken. “We had prepared for application-based questions, but in this case, the questions had to be read at least twice so that we could understand what was asked of us. There was little time for that.”
Anandu D., a student of Kendriya Vidyalaya, Kollam, said the Class XII boards were a qualifying examination, but the questions seemed to be of a level seen in competitive examinations. “Not every student will appear for engineering entrance examinations. These were competitive exam-based questions. One question, for instance, integrated two topics. We have not seen such questions in sample question papers or pre-boards.”
Another student who did not wish to be named said some students in her exam centre were left in tears. “Most students found the question paper tough. There wasn’t just enough time. I didn’t even go through the answer script for a final check at the end.”
S. Jyothis Chandran, chairman of the Jyothis group of schools, said many students were bothered by questions that required them to delve deep into portions that had been deleted. Teachers, he said, taught only from portions retained by the board. Even sample papers did not have questions from these portions.
Physics teachers said children were very dissatisfied after the examination, and some left very demoralised. “Only a small number of students belong to the high achieving category. The rest are all average students, or even weaker. Why there is no uniformity in the blueprint and difficulty level of question papers is difficult to fathom. Teachers teach on the basis of the prescribed syllabus. They should give teacher clear instructions not to teach all derivations and theory if a JEE-level paper is to be set. It is ultimately the students who feel cheated and undergo mental stress.”
Students said they were very anxious about the upcoming Mathematics examination. “It is yet another tough subject, and we wonder if it will go the same way as that of Physics. This is the first time we are appearing for the board examinations, but no consideration was given to that,” said student Aditya Kiran. Aditya says there were very few direct questions, and the question paper very different from what they had practised.
Students also alleged that their friends in other centres such as Bhopal and Mumbai had reported that their question papers were easy or moderately tough, unlike here.