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PMC head talks about MDCAT 2020 paper checking process after students’ protest

The Pakistan Medical Commission logo. — Photo courtesy Twitter

The Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) on Wednesday said that students, who appeared in the Medical and Dental College Admission Test (MDCAT), were graded on the basis of 186 questions after 14 questions were removed following students’ “feedback”.

“After doing a detailed review and taking students’ feedback, 14 questions were removed and grading was done on the basis of 186 questions,” said PMC President Dr Arshad Taqi in a press conference which he was holding alongside the body’s vice-president Muhammad Ali Raza.

The PMC president shared a detailed breakdown of the MDCAT questions, saying 58 questions were done correctly by “almost” every student. He added that 105 questions were done correctly by almost 52% of students.

Dr Taqi explained that 27 questions were made difficult by the PMC to “determine which students can go to which college,” adding that some students did well on it, while others struggled.

Dr Taqi explained the paper-checking process and clarified there was “no human involvement”.

According to students, they were awarded fewer numbers, so the PMC gave them a rechecking option after hearing their objections, he added.

“Under the agreement, 15 roll numbers were rechecked,” said Dr Taqi. 

He maintained that the PMC found out that some students had circled incorrect options and changed it once they realised their mistake which, he said, was pointed out by a machine.

“Scoring was done on the basis of what was written on the paper,” said the PMC president.  “The PMC had given all information regarding the exam format on its website.”

Dr Taqi asserted that the exam was reliable as it had obtained a 0.96 score on the test.

PMC vice-president dismisses students’ complaints

On Tuesday, PMC VP advocate Ali Raza dismissed claims by students that few questions in Medical and Dental College Admissions Test (MDCAT 2020) were incorrectly marked.

Talking to Geo Pakistan hosts on Tuesday, Ali Raza rejected doubts over the recently held MDCAT 2020 exams and its result and insisted that papers were correctly marked.

“The students are also complaining that grace marks were not given. These are all presumptions. The papers were correctly marked and 14 grace marks have also been given.”

Raza said the only issue that arose was a technical error. “Some students were shown as absentees due to a computer error. We immediately took down the results, rechecked and issued confirmed results.”

When the hosts asked how so many students could get their roll numbers wrong, Ali Raza said it was not unusual.

“It happens sometimes due to excitement. The roll number is about six numbers long and sometimes students miswrite. If 600 out of the 121,000 students miswrote their roll number then it is not a big deal.”

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