Fairness, Reliability and Validity Threats of the First University-based National Examination Management in Ethiopia

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Kinde Getachew
Fisseha Mikre
Frew Amsale
Ashenafi Belay
Netsanet Workneh
Nega Jibat
Abel Worku
Jemal Abafita
Tekle Ferede
Getachew Tilahun
Berhanu Nigussie


Academic dishonesty has become a serious educational challenge in Ethiopia. To address this challenge in the Ethiopian Secondary School Leaving Certificate Examination (ESSLCE), the MoE administered the examination for the first time in 2022/23 in public universities. Thus, this article presents research findings on the threats to fairness, reliability and validity of the ESSLCE actual administration. A concurrent mixed method design (Qual.+ Quan.) was used. Ten regions were purposely sampled, and one university was conveniently selected from each sampled region. Sixty-three (63) in-depth interviewees were conducted with various stakeholders and 938 students from Jimma Town took part in the survey. Thematic and descriptive analyses were the method of analysis. The results revealed that there were problems such as disturbing ambulance siren sounds, faulty item arrangements, shortages of exam booklets, ill-oriented exam chiefs and invigilators, and many students lacking the right concentrations and motivations to complete the examinations. Similarly, physical illnesses, exam anxiety, and home sicknesses were prevalent among students during the actual examination periods. Thus, it seems that the first university-based ESSLCE administration, which was characterized by adverse students' physical and psychosocial conditions, did not satisfy the criteria of good examinations. Therefore, it is recommended that the Ministry of Education (MoE) and the Educational Assessment and Examinations Service (EAES) have to seek for an alternative examination management which does not hamper the physical and psychosocial states of students but deters academic dishonesty and test mismanagement.

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Kinde Getachew, Fisseha Mikre, Frew Amsale, Ashenafi Belay, Netsanet Workneh, Nega Jibat, Abel Worku, Jemal Abafita, Tekle Ferede, Getachew Tilahun, & Berhanu Nigussie. (2024). Fairness, Reliability and Validity Threats of the First University-based National Examination Management in Ethiopia. Ethiopian Journal of Education and Sciences, 19(1), 65-83. Retrieved from https://journals.ju.edu.et/index.php/ejes/article/view/5279

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