The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has started the processes for placement of candidates into all tiers of tertiary institutions for the 2019/2020 academic session.
JAMB’s Head, Media and Information, Fabian Benjamin, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos.
According to Mr Benjamin, the period slated for the admission processes as agreed during a policy meeting with stakeholders on June 11, at Gbongan, Osun, remains sacrosanct.
“The board has commenced the processes for admission for the 2019/2020 academic session in earnest.
“The first choice admission for public universities commenced from August 21 and will end on November 16.
“For private universities, it will be from August 21, 2019, to February 15, 2020.
“The second choice admission for public universities will be from November 17 to December 17,” he said.
Mr Benjamin told NAN that the projection for 2019 was to ensure that candidates utilised more available spaces unlike in 2018 when there were over 500,000 unutilised available spaces in all the tiers of tertiary institutions.
He said that this development was contrary to the general narrative that there was no access to tertiary institutions, with about 60 per cent of available spaces unutilised.
Meanwhile, the spokesman said that the attention of the board had been drawn to reports in some quarters against the principles of transformation of scores by the board.
According to him, these reports are misleading and borne out of misconception or ignorance.
“In every selection examination, marks of candidates are obtained as raw scores and then processed into usable scores.
“What this means is that if for instance, JAMB examines about two million candidates in 23 subjects, it is only natural that you normalise these scores so that the candidates can be rated on the same scale.
“In the process of normalising these scores, candidates who have scored zero in a particular subject can also have a value of a mark which may not be up to 20.
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“For instance, if someone has currencies in pounds sterling, dollar, euro and others, and you want to add them together to arrive at a single sum, you must have to convert all of them to a single amount.
“That is what is done with these scores. This is similar to converting raw scores to arrive at a usable value.
“In doing this, the psychometric formula globally used by all examination bodies gives even zero, a value,” he said.
Mr Benjamin added that score transformation was not peculiar to JAMB.
According to him, it is done in countries such as India, Kenya and the United Kingdom.
“The natural thing to do by anyone who does not know how this is carried out is to research about what normalisation means.
“In any case, in the course of transforming the worth of any candidate’s score, result are not lost.
“If the raw score indicates that a candidate has come on top in an examination, after the normalisation process, the candidate’s position will remain intact. (NAN)