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In its bid to digitalise its examinations, the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) was recently hosted a training session at the National Headquarters of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) where the rudiments of psychometric analysis, as well as the requirements for establishing a Psychometrics Department as obtained in the Board, were highlighted. The leader of the WAEC delegation, Mrs Ojo Odide, Deputy Registrar, said that the Council had come to partner with the Board to further enhance the credibility of its examinations by adopting the prevailing mode of conducting public examinations, which is Computer-Based Testing (CBT), hence their visit to the Board with a view to learning from its expertise in the area of psychometrics. According to her, CBT has become the best tool in the fight against the rampant cases of examination infractions globally. Consequently, she stated that the purpose of the visit, among others, was to understudy the Board’s Psychometrics Department with aim of establishing same by the Council. In his remarks, the Registrar, JAMB, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, said that psychometrics is a n e c e ss a r y i n str ume nt i n te st development, noting that if its processes were domiciled in a Department with the right human and material resources, positive outcomes in terms of the production of standardised test items would result. He pointed out that the key feature of every examination body is integrity, therefore, if an examination body were to compromise on that, then such a body would have lost the very essence of its existence. “ T h e p a r amo u n t iss u e f o r a n y examination body is the integrity of its examinations. For this to happen, there has to be a system in place that is built on acceptable rules and regulations where global best practices are strictly implemented.” Prof. Oloyede explained that the cankerworm of examination malpractice has eaten deep into the fabric of the nation’s education system to the extent that some examination bodies now give out certificates to anyone who can afford to pay and not necessarily to those who merit them. Such tendencies, he said, should be nipped in the bud before incalculable damage is done to the system. The three-day technical interactive training which took place at the Psychometrics Department of the Board w a s h o st e d b y t h e D i r e c t o r, Psychometrics Department, Dr Akinyele Ariyo, who took the six-man delegation through the rudiments of psychometrics and the roles that such a Department is expected to play as the research hub of any examination agency. The training exposed participants to such t o p i c s a s ” I n t r o d u c t i o n t o Psychometrics”; “Relationship between Psychometrics and ICT, among others. In his remarks at the end of the training session, Mrs Odide expressed the profound gratitude of the Council to the Board for the time taken to expose them to world-class psychometrics processes. In her words, “We are extremely grateful for the time taken to put us through. The presentations were made simple and unassailable. We look forward to coming back for a more in-depth training.”

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