THE WEST AFRICAN EXAMINATIONS COUNCIL ACCRA

REPORT ON THE TRENDS IN IRREGULARITY CASES RECORDED
IN THE BASIC EDUCATION CERTIFICATE EXAMINATION:  2009-2011

1.         INTRODUCTION

The April 2011 Basic Education Certificate Examination was conducted throughout the country from 11th to 18th April, 2011.

The total number of candidates that entered for the examination was 372,826.  The entry figure comprised 202,538 males and 170,288 females.  The total figure also represented an increase of 6.25% over the previous year’s figure.  The actual number of candidates who sat for the examination was 370,582.

 

2.         INCIDENCE OF IRREGULARITY CASES

1,127 candidates indulged in malpractices during the examination.  The figure was 4.06% higher than that for the examination conducted in 2010 which recorded 1,083 candidates for cases of malpractice.

            The nature of the malpractices they engaged in included the following:

  •  Bringing foreign materials including mobile phones into the examination halls;
  • Collusion;
  • Tearing of parts of question papers and/or answer booklets to give/solicit assistance;

 

Details of the type of malpractices on gender basis for the April 2011 Basic Education Certificate Examination are given in Table 1 below.

Table 1: Examination Malpractices By Type and Gender -  BECE 2011

 

Types of Irregularity

 

No. of Candidates Involved

% Of Candidates Involved In Specific Irregularity

% of Total No. Of Candidates Involved In Irregularity Cases By Gender

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Total

 

Bringing Foreign Material into the Examination Hall

 

82

 

29

 

111

 

73.87

 

26.13

 

100

 

7.28

 

2.57

 

9.85

 

Collusion reported by Supervisor/Invigilator/Inspectors

 

41

 

29

 

70

 

58.57

 

41.43

 

100

 

3.64

 

2.57

 

6.21

 

Collusion detected in Scripts

 

577

 

297

 

874

 

66.02

 

33.98

 

100

 

51.20

 

26.35

 

77.55

 

Impersonation

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

Inadequate Particulars on Answer Booklet

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

Others

 

43

 

29

 

72

 

59.72

 

40.28

 

100

 

3.82

 

2.57

 

6.39

 

Total

 

743

 

384

 

1,127

 

65.93

 

34.07

 

100

 

65.93

 

34.07

 

100

From the table,

  • Males constituted 54.33% of the candidature for the examination and they accounted for 65.93% of candidates who engaged in malpractices. This implies that more males than ordinarily expected engaged in the malpractices.
  • There was no case of impersonation.  No candidate was also penalized for providing inadequate particulars on their answer booklets.

 

  • 944 candidates out of the 1,127 candidates who engaged in malpractices (i.e 83.76%) colluded.  Out of the number, 874 were detected by examiners, i.e. 92.58% of the candidates that engaged in collusion.  This means that nearly all the candidates that colluded were able to evade detection by their Supervisors and Invigilators.  This calls for intensification of supervision and invigilation at the centres in order to minimise the occurrence of the malpractice.

Comparative figures on the type of malpractice recorded in the examination from 2009 to 2011 are given in Table II below:

Table  II:  Trends Of Examination Malpractices By Type in BECE  2009-2011

 

Types of Irregularity

 

No. Of Candidates Involved

 

%  Of Candidates Involved In Specific Irregularity Cases

% Of Total No. Sat That Were Involved In Specific Irregularity Cases

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

Bringing Foreign Material into the Examination Hall

 

136

 

117

 

111

 

25.90

 

10.80

 

9.85

 

0.03

 

0.03

 

0.03

 

Collusion reported by Supervisor/Invigilator/
Inspectors

 

36

 

344

 

70

 

6.86

 

31.77

 

6.21

 

0.01

 

0.10

 

0.02

 

Collusion detected in Scripts

 

316

 

535

 

874

 

60.19

 

49.40

 

77.55

 

0.08

 

0.15

 

0.24

 

Impersonation

 

3

 

1

 

0

 

0.57

 

0.09

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

Inadequate Particulars on Answer Booklet

 

0

 

3

 

0

 

0.00

 

0.27

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

Others

 

34

 

83

 

72

 

6.48

 

7.67

 

6.39

 

0.01

 

0.02

 

0.02

 

Total

 

525

 

1,083

 

1,127

 

100.00

 

100.00

 

100.00

 

0.13

 

0.30

 

0.31

 

Total of No. Sat

 

392,503

 

345,501

 

370,582

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

Collusion continued to be the most prevalent form of malpractice committed by the candidates during the period. It formed 67% of the malpractice cases in 2009, 81.16% of the cases in 2010 and 83.76% of the cases in 2011. It is also showing an upward trend in its occurrence.  

 

  • Bringing foreign materials into the examination hall stayed at 0.03% of the candidates that sat for the examination throughout the period. This shows that it could be stamped out with greater vigilance by the supervisors and invigilators.
  • The percentage of candidates that sat the examination and got involved in malpractice, was the same for 2010 and 2011 (i.e 0.30%) after the rise from 0.13% in 2009.  Efforts to arrest the increase should therefore be intensified.

 

A chart showing the Trends in Examination Malpractice by Type from 2009 to 2011 is shown in Appendix A.

2.         DECISIONS TAKEN ON THE IRREGULARITY CASES

The 22nd Meeting of the Final Awards and Examiners’ Appointment Committee for the Basic Education Certificate Examination considered all the irregularity cases and took appropriate decisions on them.

Details of the decisions taken, as well as comparative figures for those taken on the 2009 and 2010 examinations, are given in Table III.

 

Table III:  Decisions Taken On Irregularity Cases -  BECE  2009-2011

 

Types of Irregularity

 

No. Of Candidates Involved

 

% Of Candidates Involved

% Of Total No. Of Candidates Who Sat

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

 

Cancellation of Entire Results

 

96


69

 

10

 

18.29

 

6.37

 

0.89

 

0.02

 

0.02

 

0.00

 

Cancellation of Subject Results

 

393

 

1,013

 

1,116

 

74.86

 

93.54

 

99.02

 

0.1

 

0.29

 

0.30

 

Cancellation of Entire Results and Barring

 

36

 

1

 

1

 

6.85

 

0.09

 

0.09

 

0.01

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

Total

 

525

 

1,083

 

1,127

 

100.00

 

100.00

 

100.00

 

0.13

 

0.31

 

0.30

 

Total of No. Sat

 

392,503

 

345,591

 

370,582

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

  • In the 2011 examination 0.89% of the candidates who were involved in irregularity cases had their entire results cancelled and 99.02% of them had their results in specific subjects cancelled.
  • The breakdown of the decisions taken on the irregularity cases in the 2011 examination is illustrated in Appendix B.

    5.         REGIONAL INCIDENCE OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICES

    Comparative figures on incidence of malpractices recorded in the examination from 2009 to 2011 on regional basis are given in Table IV below.

               
    Table IV:  Regional Incidence Of Examination Malpractices:  BECE:  2009-2011

     

    Region

     

    No. Of Candidates Sat

     

    No.  Of Candidates Involved In  Irregularity Cases

    % Of Candidates Involved Against No. Sat Per Region

    % Of Candidates Involved in Total Irregularity Cases by Region

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    ASHANTI

     

    81,733

     

    73,105

     

    76,068

     

    300

     

    619

     

    87

     

    0.37

     

    0.85

     

    0.11

     

    57.14

     

    57.16

     

    7.72

     

    BRONG AHAFO

     

    37,686

     

    32,139

     

    34,220

     

    49

     

    143

     

    335

     

    0.13

     

    0.44

     

    0.98

     

    9.33

     

    13.20

     

    29.72

     

    CENTRAL

     

    41,633

     

    34,879

     

    38,344

     

    36

     

    123

     

    130

     

    0.09

     

    0.35

     

    0.34

     

    6.86

     

    11.36

     

    11.54

     

    EASTERN

     

    43,678

     

    36,175

     

    37,452

     

    59

     

    58

     

    33

     

    0.14

     

    0.16

     

    0.09

     

    11.24

     

    5.36

     

    2.93

     

    GREATER ACCRA

     

    66,021

     

    62,508

     

    65,651

     

    6

     

    13

     

    22

     

    0.01

     

    0.02

     

    0.03

     

    1.14

     

    1.20

     

    1.95

     

    NORTHERN

     

    26,703

     

    23,956

     

    27,247

     

    21

     

    18

     

    222

     

    0.08

     

    0.08

     

    0.81

     

    4.00

     

    1.66

     

    19.70

     

    UPPER EAST

     

    15,436

     

    13,372

     

    16,226

     

    17

     

    8

     

    21

     

    0.11

     

    0.06

     

    0.13

     

    3.24

     

    0.74

     

    1.86

     

    UPPER WEST

     

    9,197

     

    8,776

     

    9,168

     

    4

     

    13

     

    12

     

    0.04

     

    0.15

     

    0.13

     

    0.76

     

    1.20

     

    1.06

    62(e)
    Table IV(Contd.):  Regional Incidence Of Examination Malpractices:  BECE:  2009-2011

     

    Region

     

    No. Of Candidates Sat

     

    No.  Of Candidates Involved In  Irregularity Cases

    % Of Candidates Involved Against No. Sat Per Region

    % Of Candidates Involved in Total Irregularity Cases by Region

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    2009

     

    2010

     

    2011

     

    VOLTA

     

    31,905

     

    25,835

     

    28,156

     

    21

     

    75

     

    35

     

    0.07

     

    0.29

     

    0.12

     

    4.00

     

    6.93

     

    3.11

     

    WESTERN

     

    38,511

     

    34,756

     

    38,050

     

    12

     

    13

     

    230

     

    0.03

     

    0.04

     

    0.60

     

    2.29

     

    1.20

     

    20.41

     

    TOTAL

     

    392,503

     

    345,501

     

    370,582

     

    525

     

    1,083

     

    1,127

     

    -

     

    -

     

    -

     

    100.00

     

    100.00

     

    100.00

    It can be observed from Table IV that:

    • Considering the percentage of candidates involved in malpractice cases as against the number of candidates who sat for the examination in the regions, Brong Ahafo Region recorded the highest percentage (0.98%).  It took over from Ashanti Region which recorded the highest in the two previous years (i.e 0.37% in 2009 and 0.85% in 2010).

     

    • Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Western Regions recorded significant increases in percentages of their candidates that were involved in malpractices in the 2010 and 2011 examinations.  In each case, the percentage of the candidates in 2010 that engaged in malpractices more than doubled in 2011.  The percentage increase of the cases in the Northern and Western Regions are the most worrying.
    • During the period too, Brong Ahafo, Greater Accra, Northern and Western Regions had upward trends in the percentage of the candidates in their regions that indulged in malpractices.  The other regions showed fluctuating trends.

     

    The regional Incidence of Examination Malpractices in 2011 is illustrated in Appendix C while the trends in regional incidence of examination malpractices from 2009 to 2011 are shown in Appendix D.


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