UAE: CBSE students concerned about time management ahead of exams, say school heads

The Term 2 papers will follow a subjective format covering 50 per cent of the curriculum


Nandini Sircar

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Published: Fri 15 Apr 2022, 9:31 AM

Last updated: Fri 15 Apr 2022, 10:35 AM

As CBSE students face board examinations in a different format for the first time, principals of the Indian-affiliated board in the UAE say pupils are most concerned about time management.

The Central Board of Secondary Education's (CBSE) exams for Grade 10 and Grade 12 are being conducted over two terms for the 2021-22 academic year.

Term 1 exams were conducted in the months of November and December, with the papers comprising objective, multiple choice questions. Term 2 exams, which begin on April 26, will be carried out subjectively. Each set of exams cover 50 per cent of the curriculum.

Though students may face various challenges this year, school heads have underlined that they remain committed to overcoming any hurdles through collaboration.

K George Mathew, principal/CEO, GEMS United Indian School – Abu Dhabi, said: “Students are facing an examination of a different format for the first time. So, coping with the challenge of time management is a concern, students have expressed.

“Teachers are preparing students based on their individual challenges and learning needs. For example, students who are finding time management a challenge, and tend to leave out a few exam questions as a result, are given a speed-writing practice to improve their completion time.”

Difficult topics that require revision are re-taught and students are gaining confidence with small- and all-unit assessments.

“Parents, too, are supporting schools by providing necessary resources and routines to maximise learning and revision at home. Teachers are available to support online as well as in school. Schools, parents and students had some tense moments when fake circulars about the weightage did the rounds on social media. Thankfully, CBSE stepped in to clarify the issue,” Mathew added.

Some head teachers said students are anxious the about subjective questions, as it is a different format than what they are used to. However, many schools have conducted at least two practice examinations prior to the boards.

Pramod Mahajan, director and principal of Sharjah Indian School, said: “The only challenge that I see is, that the examination pattern has been modified this year. So, we’ve had two rounds of pre-boards in our school. I feel the students are quite well prepared by now, as the board exam is also starting late this year, on April 26, compared to other years, when it usually begins in the month of March."

Currently, the school is organising sessions to clear students' doubts and ensure they're well-prepared for the exams.

"Enrichment classes are being conducted for students who have been performing well in the in-house exams. Remedial classes are being held for those who need more help in only specific subjects and an academic adoption is happening for students who require greater guidance, where the teachers academically adopt them, to ensure that they, too, perform to the best of their capabilities in the upcoming board exams," Mahajan said.


Schools have prepared question banks, support classes, one-on-one and online sessions, as well as provided learning resources to support their students and to help them feel confident.

Deepika Thapar Singh, CEO and principal, Credence High School, said: “As we have a well-structured assessment system, the students are prepared for the board exams. Teachers have given sufficient practice material and guidance to the students appearing for the board exams. They are in constant touch with the students to monitor their well-being through WhatsApp and Zoom groups. The school counselling and well-being departments are regularly meeting with the students both offline and in online mode.”

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