Testing systems in Pakistan and the impacts on candidates:

We, the common man in Pakistan specially the jobless and fresh graduates from any universities have been trapped in the quagmire of testing systems in the country. This is a type of game to satisfy the expected protesters from the citizens specially from the students, who will search jobs in government and private institutions, after completion their education, if there is no jobs in the market or the ratio of jobs to aspirants is much less than the out coming candidates from different educational institutions, then the psychological stress of the youth will be the result in the form of protest, strikes even sometimes the destruction to government and public places, building etc.

In simply to satisfy the jobless people the government use the testing system tactics, for example for a single post there will hundreds of candidates but only few will get the jobs, remaining will be cooled after the results declared, they will know that they have failed and the competent have done it, and a series of applications start for the jobs until anyone will get their desire job.

Here the criticism doesn’t on the positivity of any competitive test rather it is the critique on the job ratios, creating by the government with respect to the students and the products from any educational institutions in Pakistan.
Now will focus our discussion on the research based data on testing system, educational statistics, candidates and jobs statistics, and testing organizations in Pakistan etc.
In the British India the civil services were established in 1926 for public service commission. After independence 1947 in Pakistan service commission (CSS) was established under the government India act 1935.The quality of test has been not compromised since it’s forming.

There are two main bodies playing the role for testing the aspirants for jobs, admissions in colleges, universities etc.
1) Government organization

  1. FCPS(Federal Public service commission)
    b. KPKPSC (KPK Public service commission)
    c. PPSC (Punjab Public service commission)
    d. SPSC (Sind Public service commission)
    e. BPSC (Baluchistan Public service commission)etc

2) Private organization
a.NTS (National testing service)
Conducting two types of test
b.PTS (Pakistan testing service)
Conducting different kind of test  i.e. TAG, AAT,
c.MTS (Merit testing service)
d.OTS (Open testing service)
e.JTS (Jobs testing service)
f.UTS (Universal testing service)
g.STS (Soil testing service)
h.STS (Sind testing service)
i.BTS (Baluchistan testing service)
j.ETS (Eastern testing service)
k.ETEA(Educational Testing and Evaluation Agency)KPK

Pakistan unemployment data:
According to trading economic of Pakistan, unemployment decrease to 5.9% in the fourth quarter of 2015 from 6% in the fourth quarter of 2014.Unemployment rate in Pakistan average 5.46% from 1985 until 2015,reaching all time high 7.8% in the second quarter of 2002 and a record of low 3.10% in the fourth quarter of 1987.Currently employed persons in Pakistan are 57420 thousands and unemployees 3620 thousands. According to Pakistan education statistics handbook 2006-2008,total number of students in the country from  grade one to PhD level 37 million (37462900).Only 27.9 millions kids aged between 5 to 19 enrolled out of 70 millions. According to Higher education commission (HEC) report 2013-14, 3 millions students (15% of total population) in grades 13 to 16 in Pakistan in 1086 degree colleges and 161 universities out of the 20 millions Pakistanis, in the age between 18-24 year.
There are over 255,000 Pakistanis enrolled in vocational training schools according to TEVTA.
Pakistani universities have been producing over 10,000 IT graduates every year since 2010.
In 1947 only one university in Pakistan “university of Punjab” was servicing the country and up to 2014 increased to 161.
During General Musharraf era from 2002 to 2008, 51 new universities were established. Students enrolled in universities in 2003 were 135,000 and increased to 400,000 became triple in 2008.

Now we will only limit our discussion to one government organization and one private organization that are conducting various types of test for employment and other educational institution’s admissions.
A). Federal public service commission.
Conducting various types of competitive exams for various type of posts in different government institutions,
mostly are objective type papers(FPSC tests) and also subjective type test.(CSS).
We will show some statistics of students participated in competitive exam CSS-2012 to CSS-2016.
i) CSS-2012:
Appeared: 10066
Passed: 788
Male: 588
Female: 200
Percentage: 7.8%

ii) CSS-2013:
Applied: 15998
Appeared: 11406
Passed: 238
Percentage: 2.09%

iii) CSS-2014:
Applied: 24640
Appeared: 13170
Passed: 439
Male: 294
Female: 145
Percentage: 3.30%

iv) CSS-2015:
Appeared: 12176
Passed: 379
Percentage: 3.11%

v) CSS-2016:
Passed: 368

Advantages and disadvantages:
For FPSC tests only need online registration no need of sending hard copies that’s save aspirants time and money.
Job seeker don’t get worry about sending the documents through post office, TCS other courier services, risk of late receiving, photocopies tension etc doesn’t irritate the jobless.
But the fault is that’s no candidate have the facility of online checking the result so that he/she can get satisfied about their tests i.e. objective type tests are not displayed in the website.
Another fault is of showing or displaying results too much late even have to wait for months, bother the aspirants, which create the concept of corruption in the mind of the candidate, that’s there is something going wrong in displaying the merit.etc

B).National Testing Service (NTS):
NTS was founded in 2006,since its establishment ,played a major role of conducting various tests in the country.
Various type of tests are conducting by NTS are GAT, NAT, SAT.
Currently the CEO is Dr. Sherzada, leading in a good approach.
According to newspaper “the News” published article on 13 Jan 2017, there are more than 11 private recruitment test conducting agencies.NTS has largest network of 500+ public sector institutions including the defense department, hire the services of NTS, 80% of government departments ask NTS to conduct test, 3000 subject specialists are working with NTS responsible for test preparation and data reviews.
More than 6100 tests and assessments in various disciplines for education, assessment recruitment and promotion have conducted yet, more than 15 millions candidates till November 2016 appeared in NTS.
NTS tests have helped in improving Pakistan GCI (2013-2014) ranking on the 5th pillar, higher education and training the tertiary education 121 from 125 in 2012-13.
It enabled thousands of Pakistani students to pursue post graduation to PhD on scholarships in universities in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, USA etc

Now we will conclude the result in the following paragraph.
Average and below the average Pakistanis are facing hurdles in getting higher education if they suppose to manage their educational expenditure for education, finally get their degrees, in the market searching for jobs, parent and family’s expectations, other social factor, making them torture for getting a valuable job. So they try their best to test their fortune, applying for various jobs in government and private companies.
All need money even for a single post minimum expenditure (form+ post office + photocopies ) is Rs500+.and the transport +food+ hostel/hotel charges can be 1 to 4+ thousands(increase according to the distance from the test center).
For example a candidate from Chitral applying in FPSC has to attempt the test at nearest center, that’s in Peshawar or Islamabad or Rawalpindi.
Transport charges will be from Chitral to Islamabad, then to Chitral can be(2xtransport+2x(on way hotel)+stay at hotel/hostel minimum for three days and one week in winter as the tunnel and Laware top issues).i.e. (2×1200+2×300+2000+etc) =5000Rs.
That’s a simple case if you are coming from Sindh, Baluchistan you can imagine it. That’s the point I want to focus.
Is this is a justice or injustice with us, that’s the decision, is up to you.
1).Application form for all test must be Rs50 to Rs100.
2).All registration must be online and no need of hard copies to be sent to the respective Central offices, so that times and money will save.
3).Result must be declared within a week or 10 days.
4).Merit based list considering the academic and test scores must be made and must be displayed online so that everyone can be assured of their results.
5).Test centers must be nearest to the candidates, if it is not possible, test must be conducted in any stadium of the city or in any playground of government’s universities, so that candidates can have easily access to their respective centers without any problem.
6).Inform about test date and time and also about the Merit list date and time through SMS and email system also, so that every candidate can’t miss the chance.
7).Roll number for all test must be issued online and properly inform through SMS or email. If there isn’t net availability SMS should be considered valid for attending the test.etc.

Note: There may be more solution to this big problem of the nation.

By Rizwan ul Mulk Sahil
this article has been published in face book page Explore Chitral




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email: rizwanulmulk@gmail.com Hobbies: Research,Poetry,Writing articles in Urdu,English and Khowar (Chitrali) Education: 1.MSCS University of South Asia Lahore (continue....) 2.MIT Quaid-e-Azam University Islamabad