SSC CGL 2017: Is Normalization Of Marks Important?

Lakhs of students each year dream of getting a government job and because of the carelessness of the exam conducting authorities, the dreams remain unfulfilled or get shattered.

In the recently held Staff Selection Commission Combined Graduate Level (CGL) examination, 2017 (Tier-I), there was No Normalization of Marks. The students who appeared are demanding that scores of the test be normalized. This is because they claim that the difficulty level of the exam held on August 16, 2017, was higher. A total of 15,43,962 candidates took this recruitment exam which was conducted in 43 batches across the country. The exam was held from August 5 to August 23 and the results are expected to release on October 31.

SSC CGL 2017

In lieu of the same, the students have started a campaign over Facebook where other aspirants can share their grievances and demand normalization of scores. This all came into force when the Answer Keys were released, for it was then analyzed that the questions were comparatively difficult for those who appeared in and before August 16 sessions. According to the feedback of the students, in many of the shifts the level of the exam was very easy; hence students were able to solve more questions in the given time limit. But in a few shifts, the level of the questions was lengthy and difficult. The commission needs to consider such disparity in the level of the exam and does justice to the students.

The students are also planning to file a case in the Central Administrative Tribunal – a body established for adjudication of disputes with respect to recruitment exams. In a poll or research conducted after the exam to analyze candidate’s performance, it was found that that the students who appeared from August 5 to 18, their average marks comes around 120-122 marks while those who have given test from August 19 to 23, scores around 130 marks. In CGL, even one mark makes difference in the future of candidates and therefore, it is high time SSC starts normalization of scores.

Most of the entrance and recruitment exams such as JEE, CAT, IBPS, SBI, UPSC etc. are held in various shifts and they use normalization of scores.  A lot of exams are being conducted in different slots nowadays. Conducting exams in different slots means, there will be a variation in the difficulty level of the exams. To cater this issue, the Exam conducting authorities undertake a normalization process.


The exam conducting body makes a simple formula and fixed parameters to calculate scores. Once the answers are checked, the normalized marks of a candidate are calculated corresponding to the actual marks secured by the candidate. The difficulty level of any two exam papers is never the same nor 100 percent equal. This is why SSC should start using this method to normalize scores of the student, who gave SSC CGL 2017. Since exam was conducted in multiple shifts, normalisation is a must to ensure a level playing field to all aspirants.

With technology, exam conducting bodies have data through which they can find out which question took the maximum time of the aspirant and can, therefore, calculate which questions were comparatively more difficult. Therefore, to facilitate fair competition to all the job seekers, SSC should also consider the request for the same.

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