REPORT ON CANDIDATES WORK IN THE SECONDARY EDUCATION

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CARIBBEAN EXAMINATIONS COUNCIL




     REPORT ON CANDIDATES' WORK IN THE
SECONDARY EDUCATION CERTIFICATE EXAMINATION



                    MAY/JUNE 2010




        HOME ECONOMICS: MANAGEMENT




     Copyright  2010 Caribbean Examinations Council
                   St Michael, Barbados
                    All rights reserved
                                                 -2-


                             HOME ECONOMICS: MANAGEMENT

                          GENERAL PROFICIENCY EXAMINATION

                                             JUNE 2010

                             STRUCTURE OF THE EXAMINATION

The Caribbean Examinations Council Administered its 29th examination of the Caribbean Secondary
Certificate of Home Economics in May 2010. The General Proficiency included three components:
Paper 01  Multiple Choice, Paper 02  Structured Essay and Paper 03  School-Based Assessment.

Paper 01 comprised 60 multiple choice items, each worth one mark.

Paper 02 consisted of two parts. Part A comprised three compulsory questions while Part B
comprised four questions from which candidates were required to choose two. Each question was
awarded a total of 16 marks, 6 marks awarded for the Knowledge Profile and 10 marks for Use of
Knowledge Profile.

                                     GENERAL COMMENTS

The compulsory questions on Paper 02 have historically revolved around Modules 5, 7 and 10.
Despite this known fact the questions continue to be poorly understood by the candidates and the
responses were shallow and parochial. There was a lack of proper usage of language, both
grammatical and technical and the appropriate knowledge relating to the content inherent to these
objectives. Most often candidates reverted to their personal or family experiences and very often
street parlance and superstition as against the use of the taught verifiable content required of
candidates. There needs to be greater evidence of the subject mastery and at least reasonable
exposure to the standard knowledge by the majority of the candidates across the region. It is desirable
that regions and schools take note of this tendency, do more to improve the greater understanding of
the content and the need for mastery of these important areas of the curriculum, and to seek to revise
and update the texts and other resources used in the teaching of the topics.

Concepts pertaining to the critical objectives seemed misunderstood and poorly reported on by the
candidates. Candidates often failed to determine differences in meanings of important concepts like
definitions, characteristics, factors, benefit, effects, reasons/explanations and examples. Many
incorrect responses or responses that earned only partial marks for the candidates were due to their
inability to demonstrate their mastery of the critical language of organising and understanding the
course content.

Candidates often demonstrated lack of knowledge in answering questions and the inability to follow
instructions by the way they wrote two or three lines of information on a single page of the answer
booklet, often with incorrect responses and as a result wasted the entire manuscript.

There must be concerted efforts for teachers to help the students learn how to read and interpret the
essay questions and provide reasonable responses that will earn the assigned marks. The low scores
of some candidates who took this examination suggest that some candidates did not study the subject
or were just not at the readiness level. The latter inference was based on the incoherent, illegible,
nonsensical responses of some candidates.
                                                    -3-


                                       DETAILED COMMENTS

                                      Paper 01  Multiple Choice

Candidate performance on this paper declined significantly in 2010. The topics which proved to be
challenging to the candidates were:

    The least reliable method of family planning
    The type of glassware used for serving wine
    The alkali used for removing heavy grease stains
    Factors that contribute to safety in the kitchen
    Ingredients for preparing a home-made furniture polish for wooden furniture
    Characteristics of heat resistant glass
    ,,Open stock with reference to tableware


Section A

Question 1

Mean: 6.11       Std. Dev.: 3.74

In Part (a) (i), candidates were required to:

State two benefits to be derived from family members working cooperatively in the kitchen garden,
the key phrase being, "family members working cooperatively."

A number of candidates were able to write the correct responses to include:

    Building family bonds
    Younger family members developing responsibility
    Building a spirit of cooperation
    Work would be done quicker and easier
    Team work and togetherness in getting work done.

Other candidates gave incorrect responses, which are indicative of a lack of knowledge and their
being unprepared for the examination and/or their misinterpretation of the question.

Part (a) (ii) asked for the benefits of an individual having a job.

This was answered correctly by most of the candidates.

Some popular correct responses were:

    Gain work experience
    To get an income
    To confer status
    Will be able to achieve goals
    Develop independence
    Can improve standard of living.
                                                    -4-


In Part (b) (i), candidates were asked to state one characteristic of good mental health.

Most candidates misinterpreted the question and provided responses that referred to activities to be
done in maintaining good mental health instead of providing responses on the "characteristics"
(features, attributes, quality) of good mental health.

Some correct responses included:

    Having good relationship with co-workers
    Being able to interpret and make right decisions
    Alertness
    Being focused
    Having good memory
    Sense of personal well-being.

Part (b) (ii) asked for one characteristic of physical fitness.

Again some candidates misinterpreted this question and failed to state the "characteristic" of physical
fitness.

Some correctly stated responses were:

    The ability to carry out daily activities without feeling tired easily
    Energetic and active
    Good posture
    Being physically alert.

Incorrect responses given often included:

    Exercising regularly
    Keeping the body fit
    Eating a lot of fruits and vegetables
    Eating from the six food groups
    Free from sickness.

Part (b) (iii) required candidates to briefly discuss effects of good mental health on the work
performance of teachers preparing students for an examination.

Some candidates answered the question very poorly; some did not even attempt to respond to this part
of the question. In many instances, candidates referred to the effects of good mental health for the
"students" preparing and going into an examination instead of the effects of good mental health on the
teachers work performance in preparing students for the examination. Additional ly some candidates
stated points instead of briefly discussing the points in their responses.

Where candidates provided the correct responses, some popular correct responses were:

    Teachers should be alert and focus on preparing students for the examination so that more work
    can be done.
    Teachers should be patient with the weaker students and help them in understanding more in
    those areas in which they are weak.
    The teacher will remain calm even when it becomes very stressful preparing students for the
    examination and will not curse them.
                                                   -5-


    The teacher will have extra classes, go through past papers and ensure the syllabus is completed
    before the examination.
    The teachers will encourage and motivate students to study and work hard so that they can pass
    the examination with very good grades.

Part (b) (iv) asked candidates to briefly discuss effects of poor physical fitness.

Some candidates gave satisfactory responses. However, other responses spoke to students physical
fitness and also activities that the teacher could engage in to maintain physical fitness.

Some of the correct responses written by the candidates were:

    Teachers will be absent from school and do not get to cover the syllabus before the examination.
    Teacher is always tired and cannot move around the class to help students.
    Teachers will lack energy and motivation to assist students.


Question 2

Mean: 6.21       Std. Dev.: 3.37

The question tested candidates knowledge of budgeting. Part (a) tested candidates ability to recall
valid reasons for preparing a budget. Part (b) required candidates to state one important task that may
be performed regularly to ensure budgeting is an effective way of managing their money. Part (c)
required candidates to name factors other than expenditure that should be considered when making a
budget.

Part (a) in particular was fairly well done, as most candidates were able to state at least two of the
three valid reasons for preparing a budget.

Some of the correct responses included:

    To keep spending under control
    To reduce impulse buying
    To provide a plan for saving.

Part (b) was poorly done; most candidates gave reasons for preparing a budget instead of stating the
important task or what must be done to manage a budget after it is prepared. Even in instances when
the reason was named in Part (a), it was repeated in Part (b).

Some of the expected responses were:

    Keep a record of all spending
    Stick to the budget as much as is possible
    Review the budget regularly
    Adjust expenditures and savings to meet priorities
    Identify ways to increase income
    Keep ones job.

For (c), many candidates could not name ,,net income and ,,savings as factors to consider in making a
budget.
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