Over a million students are getting ready to take their exams, which are organized by the Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB). These exams will begin on October 13, 2023.
UNEB shared in a statement on September 6, 2023, that a total of 1,224,371 students have signed up to take the Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE), Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE), and Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (UACE). These exams will be conducted at 20,921 different examination centers.
The head of UNEB, Dan Odongo, mentioned that out of all the students taking these exams, 51% are girls, and 49% are boys.
This year’s national exams will begin with the briefing of UCE candidates on October 13, 2023. The UCE exams, starting with geography on October 16, 2023, will continue until November 17, 2023.
In contrast, PLE exams will be held from November 7 to 9, 2023, and UACE exams will run from November 10 to December 1, 2023.
Odongo shared that UNEB has seen an increase in the number of UACE candidates this year, reaching 110,579, compared to last year’s 97,889. At the UCE level, there has also been an increase, with the number of candidates going up from 349,433 to 364,421.
However, the number of PLE candidates has decreased from last year’s 832,809 to 749,371.
UNEB reported that among all the candidates, 3,698 have special needs, compared to 3,400 from last year. Out of these special needs candidates, 2,436 will take PLE, 721 will take UCE, and 242 are UACE candidates.
Odongo disclosed that 645,191 (53%) of all the candidates are government-sponsored, while 579,180 (47%) are privately sponsored.
He also mentioned, “The board is steadily preparing for the assessment of learners under the new lower secondary school curriculum.” While the actual exams under the new curriculum will take place next year, preparations are already underway.
“We have just completed a pre-test of the test items across the country and are currently analyzing the results. This pre-test was done in 220 schools and involved 6,000 students,” he revealed.
During the pre-test, the board talked to senior three students (the class that participated in the pre-test) and gathered valuable feedback. They are also collecting the opinions of teachers.
“The analysis of the pretest results will guide the board’s decisions on the final exam papers. At the right time, the board will distribute sample exam papers to all schools so that students can become familiar with the questions and formats, which will help them prepare,” he said.