Rly switches over to 100 per cent objective  format for departmental promotion exams

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 29 Dec 2018 11:47:22


By Sagar Mohod,

The process cannot test working knowledge about language, comprehensive skills of  the staff, say old timers

Railway Board has relaxed the norms to enable railway employees to clear the departmental promotion examinations. Henceforth, railway units are directed to hold only objective type examinations that are held to assess knowledge of employees before deciding their promotion. Divisional units hold departmental examination for filling up to promote employees from Group D to C.

Earlier when departmental exams were held, employees had to provide descriptive answers to questions that sought to test their knowledge about procedures and norms. Later, the same was diluted and 50 per cent was objective and 50 per cent descriptive. Now, through a circular, Board has notified holding 100 per cent objective type question paper. It will be a multiple choice question format only for which units were directed to prepare question banks.

Though departmental exams format is now objective, there is a catch as negative marking would be there. Every wrong answer would led to deduction of one third of marks assigned to that question. This makes it tough for employees as they would be required to only tick mark the correct answer and apply mind before narrowing down on right answer. The beauty with objective type questionnaire is that each of the answers looks a probable right and leaves the aspirant confused. Hence in negative marking the objective type tests are often more difficult to crack than regular ones.

The objective type question and answer format though made applicable to all departmental type promotions, barring that of Accounts Department and Railway Protection Force (RPF). The two departments have been provided liberty to their own policy on promotions to the staff given their diverse requirements.

Old timers in railways have described the Board’s move to shift only to 100 per cent objective as bad as this away one cannot test comprehensive knowledge of the staff. The last format wherein 50 per cent descriptive answers were needed to be written established writing prowess of employees that is now sought to be discarded. It proves problematic as the new promotees face problem in drafting proper communication letters. Also in descriptive answers, one could easily markout candidate’s working knowledge about language that is currently lacking in the new recruits.