Ask the CBSE
( The Central Board of Secondary
Education answers questions relating to its examinations )
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The Central Board of Secondary
Education answers questions relating to its examinations from The Hindu's
readers. Readers are welcome to send in more questions, primarily those relating
to the Class X and XII examinations, to firstname.lastname@example.org, which will be
forwarded to the CBSE. Answers to a select number of them will be published in
these columns in subsequent instalments. The purpose of this series is also to
help students overcome examination-related stress.
What are the portions in organic chemistry from which questions will be
asked? What are the important portions in the subject to be studied?
The syllabus for Chemistry for the 2011 Board examination is available in the
examination section on the CBSE website www.cbse.nic.in.
I am teaching Social Science for Class IX and X, and I have a son in Class X.
Please provide lesson-wise break-up of marks for all subjects for the SA II exam
to be conducted in March 2011. Example: In History we have two lessons for SA II
— nationalism in Europe and nationalism in India. How many marks does each
lesson carry? If I have four lessons in Political Science, how many marks does
each lesson carry?
Please refer to the Design of the Question Paper in Social Science for Class X,
Summative Examination II which has been posted on the Board's website
www.cbse.nic.in. under Examinations section - Sample Question Papers for Class
IX and X for Term II (Second Term March 2011).
I am a Class X student. Please clarify a) Will the evaluation for the SA II
exam conducted by the Board be strict?
Evaluation for the Summative Assessment II conducted by the Board or the School
will be based on the marking scheme supplied by the Board for the Question
b) Can a student appear for the SA II conducted by the Board if she wishes to
test his/her talent?
The Board-conducted SA II is meant for the students of secondary schools and
those of senior secondary schools who have opted to move out of the CBSE system.
However, students can appear for proficiency tests conducted by the Board after
Class X in case they wish to test their level of understanding. For more details
on proficiency tests, please refer to the circular No. 56 dated September 1,
2010 posted on the Board's website www.cbse.nic.in.
c) Can a student appear for the Board-conducted SA II, join another CBSE
school for Class XI and XII?
Students who appear in the Board-conducted SA II can join another CBSE school.
But depending on the specific situation, the schools may give first preference
to the students who have taken their school-based assessment and then consider
admission as per availability of seats.
d) Our school is giving marks liberally. Is there a chance for students
writing school-conducted exam to score more marks? What are the precautions
taken by the Board to prevent such unfair practices?
Evaluation of answer scripts of the school-conducted summative examination will
be done by the school teachers themselves on the basis of the Marking Scheme
provided by the Board. The school may use the Sahodaya School Cluster for spot
evaluation so that teachers from other schools are also involved, if they so
wish. There will be random verification of the assessment procedures of schools
by the Board officials/nominees appointed by the Board.
e) Is the question paper for the exams conducted by the Board and the school
same? Can teachers take questions from all the sets followed by the Board and
make a new question paper which will be easy for the student to answer and score
The question papers for the Board-conducted exam and the school-conducted exam
are based on the same syllabus and design of the question paper prescribed by
Schools are given a set of question papers for administration. If the school
wishes, they mix and match the questions or can make their own question papers
as per the marking scheme. However in latter case, they will have to email
question paper to the Board for verification. There will be random verification
of the assessment procedures of schools by the Board officials/nominees
appointed by the Board.
f) We understand that students are allowed to sit together but they have to
write different sets of question paper in the Board-conducted exam. Is this also
the case for the school-conducted exam?
The detailed mechanism of administration of the school-conducted examination
will be decided by the school concerned.
g) In the school-conducted exam, there is a possibility of teachers showing
partiality towards some students or evaluation being stricter. Does the Board
verify the answer sheets of students who appear for the school-conducted exam?
Evaluation of answer scripts will be done by the school teachers themselves on
the basis of the Marking Scheme provided by the Board. The school may use the
Sahodaya School Cluster for spot evaluation so that teachers from other schools
are also involved, if they so wish. There will be random verification of the
assessment procedures of schools by the Board officials/nominees appointed by
h) Will the marks obtained in the first term along with FA3 and FA4 be
included in the final certificate?
The final grades for Class IX as well as for Class X awarded to the students in
the CCE Report Card will be based on the performance of the students in FAs and
SAs conducted during the entire year for each class separately.
I am in Class X and have opted for the Board examination. I want to ask
whether the Board exam will ask questions from the whole syllabus or only from
the remaining syllabus after the initial exam?
Pushkar Jha (email@example.com)
The Summative Examination II for Class X conducted by the Board or by the school
will be based on the syllabus prescribed for second term only.
I am an average CBSE student. I prefer to continue in CBSE, but the general
view is that I will not be able to score as many marks as I might if I were in
Matriculation system, and lose out in admission to a good college. As college
admission is based mainly on the Plus Two marks, I am concerned whether I should
continue in the CBSE system. Please advise.
Performance in any examination depends upon the hard work you put in. However,
it is a choice available with the students either to continue studying in a CBSE
school or to change the Board and join any other Board.
Please send me the format for report writing, notice writing, letter-
writing, note making, advertisement writing. Please provide some examples also.
Formats for report writing, notice writing, letter writing, note making and
advertisement writing have been provided in the Main Course Book and the Work
Book for English Course (Communicative). Please refer to the prescribed books
for related content.
I am going to take the Class X Board exam. Will Class IX syllabus be also
included for this exam?
The details regarding question paper pattern and syllabus have been provided
under Examination corner available on the Board's website www.cbse.nic.in. The
SA II will be based on the second term syllabus prescribed by the Board.
My son is joining CBSE for Class VIII in India. He does not have prior
knowledge of Hindi. He is a U.S citizen. Can he get a waiver to replace second
language with any other subject for Class X exams? If not, can he take Spanish
even if the school does not prepare him, and appear in the exam independently?
As per the policy of the CBSE, in Class VIII, three languages must be studied
with English and Hindi as compulsory languages and the third language could be
any from the languages offered by the Board and taught in the school concerned.
If the school arranges so, your son may study Hindi as third language in Class
VIII with English and one more Indian /foreign language offered by the school.
No waiver can be granted for the third language (in your case it will be Hindi)
and your son must necessarily pass the third language. However, there is
relaxation to pass the third language as per the syllabus of Class VIII before
appearing for the Class X Board exam and not necessarily at the end of Class
An exemption for the third language till Class VIII is there for differently-abled
In Class IX and X, a student has to study two languages, one of them must
necessarily be either Hindi or English. Second language could be any of the
remaining 31 languages offered by the CBSE including Spanish.
There is also a provision to study a language as a sixth additional subject. In
case of language as the sixth additional also, there is a further provision of
the same replacing one of the main languages in the eventuality of the student
not clearing the same in the Board examination provided after replacement the
candidate has passed either Hindi or English as one of the languages.