How to choose between CBSE board exam and School conducted exam for class X ?

As per CBSE norms, it is possible for a CBSE class X student to write either the final exam conducted by CBSE board or the exam conducted by his/ her school. What are the merits and demerits of board exam and school final exam for CBSE class X? What is the weightage given by school for each formative and summative assessments? This article explains them clearly and help you to choose between board exam or school internal exam.

Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) by CBSE

In 2009, CBSE introduced a new system to evaluate students.It is known as Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE). According to CCE, the evaluation of the student is based on his/ her performance in scholastic as well as co-scholastic area. This includes life skills, sports, arts, projects, debate etc.
As part of continuous evaluation, small tests are conducted throughout the year and grades will be given. This will reduce stress and fear of final exam. Earlier, the marks / grade of the student was based on the final exam only. The drawback of this old system was - the student who prepare just for final exam may score higher marks than one who was consistently performing but couldn't perform well for the final exam. As per CCE, those who perform well in curricular and extra-curricular activities consistently round the year will be awarded a better grade. The final exam contributes only a percentage of total grade.

Unlike the old pattern, CBSE conducts 2 types of assessments in a year. Formative Assessments and Summative Assessments. There will be 4 Formative Assessments and 2 Summative Assessments every year. After FA-1 and FA-2, SA-1 will be conducted. Similarly, after FA-3 and FA-4, SA-2 will be conducted. Each Formative assessments carry 10% weightage and Summative Assessments carry 30% weightage.

FA1 + FA2 + SA1 = 10%+10%+30%
FA3 + FA4 + SA2 = 10%+10%+30%
Total = 100%

In 2011, CBSE made board exam optional for its class X students. That means, class X exams will be conducted by the school and CBSE board. The student can choose and appear for any one of them.

Merits and Demerits of CBSE board and school based exams

1. For Exam conducted by School, the evaluation will be done by teachers of the same school only. Whereas for board exam, evaluation will be done by teachers outside the school.
2. For class X final exam by school, the question papers are prepared by same school based on the directions and guidelines by CBSE where as for board exam, the question paper is prepared by CBSE board.
3. In case of school based exam, the school get a chance to choose a convenient date for the exam based on CBSE rules. The board exam dates are decided by CBSE which will be same all over India.

Don't think that school exam question paper will be easier than board exam. CBSE has strict rules to avoid preparation of easy question paper and liberal evaluation for students of same school. Do not choose school exam for these benefits.

Who should choose CBSE board exam ?

This selection depends on your need. The CBSE board exam and school internal exam has its own merits and demerits. Understand them thoroughly before opting any one of them. The selection should be made mainly based on the student's future education plans. If the student want to move out of CBSE system after class X, like state level class XI , pre-university, ITI or any diploma course then, he has to appear for board exam. School based exam will not be considered valid by boards other than CBSE. If the student is planning to continue with CBSE for class XI, then school based exam will be enough.

Internal marks by school for CBSE class X board exam

For class X, the mark distribution will be slightly different than smaller classes. It will be,

FA1 + FA2 + SA1 = 10%+10%+20%
FA3 + FA4 + SA2 = 10%+10%+40%
Total = 100%

Out of these 6 assessments, 5 will be evaluated by school itself irrespective of whether the student chose school level or board exam. Only the SA-2 is allowed to choose between school exam or board exam. That means, 60% of the mark will be based of the exams conducted by school itself. Rest 40 % will be done by the board or school as per the students option.

Class X certificates by CBSE board and School

Final Certificates for both exams are issued by CBSE board itself and both look same. It cannot be identified whether the child appeared school exam or board exam by looking the certificate. The results of both the exams are also announced at the same time.

The class X grade scale

Marks Range      Grade     Grade Point
91-100                   A1          10.0
81-90                     A2           9.0
71-80                    B1            8.0
61-70                    B2            7.0
51-60                    C1           6.0
41-50                    C2           5.0
33-40                    D             4.0
21-32                    E1            -
00-20                    E2            -  

The CBSE class X result is in the form of CGPA (Cumulative Grade Points Average).

How to calculate CGPA

To calculate CGPA, add the grades of all 5 major subjects and divide it by 5. Multiply CGPA with 9.5 to convert CGPA to percentage.

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