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5 Common JAMB Myths That Hinder JAMB Candidates Every Year

5 Common JAMB Myths To Take Note Of If You’re Preparing For JAMB: 

Are you preparing for the coming JAMB UTME? Then, here are some myths to be cautious of. A myth in this context is something that many people believe but that does not exist or is false. It is synonymous with the term “fallacy” which could similarly be defined as a false idea that many people believe is true.

The only thread between a rumor and a myth is the number of people that have believed and accepted it to be true. A rumor gradually becomes a myth when it has spread widely and has been accepted over a long time.

There are such false ideas about JAMB that have gradually become strongholds in the minds of students and have prevented them from putting in their very best for the examination. If you must succeed in JAMB once and for all, you must first start by dispelling these false notions from your mind. The JAMB myths mentioned here may not be the only wrong notions students have and believe about JAMB but they are the most common.

Myth 1: It is impossible to score above 300 in JAMB.

This is by far the most important myth to debunk. The easiest way to disprove this is to point towards candidates that have done it in the past. Year in year out, though they might not be so many, candidates cross the 300 mark. If someone else has done it, what that means is that it is actually possible. So, if you have subscribed to this belief in the past, it’s best to let it go now.

The two important ingredients for joining the top-scorers are simply a positive growth mindset and consistent effort. Your mindset goes a long way in determining how you learn and what you eventually accomplish in life. A “growth mindset”, thrives on challenge and sees failure not as evidence of not being intelligent but as a springboard for growth and stretching one’s current abilities. This kind of mindset, when combined with consistent effort, can bring out astonishing results.

THE TRUTH: It is possible to score above 300 in JAMB. The question is whether you choose to believe it or not and whether you are willing to work towards it.

Myth 2: It is not possible to pass JAMB without engaging in exam malpractice.

Another false notion is that if you don’t engage in examination malpractice by perhaps paying an impersonator to write your exam for you or carrying “leaked” answers and expo into the hall, you can’t pass JAMB. This one is wrong in many ways, one obvious reason being that people do well in JAMB every year without malpractice. Also, it is important to note that examination malpractice is a serious offense that could cost a candidate time in prison and result in other negative repercussions.

In case you know someone who is considering engaging in malpractice by entering the exam hall with “expo,” please tell them that JAMB ensures that CCTV cameras are installed in accredited examination centres. In fact, wristwatches are not allowed in JAMB exam halls. Besides that, there are other strict measures to prevent cheating and to catch any culprits of malpractice. In other words, it’s best to stay clear of any form of examination malpractice. 

THE TRUTH: You can not only pass JAMB without examination malpractice but you can come out with an outstanding result if you do the needful and read your books. If interested, you can check out how to prepare for JAMB.

Myth 3: You can’t “make it in life” if you don’t study Law, Medicine, Accounting, Engineering or any other “professional” course.

In this case, nobody is to blame for thinking this way because these courses are popular for a reason. The reason why these courses are popular is that they are in high demand anywhere in the world. And they are in high demand because in most developed and civilized societies, the labour market is constantly in search of engineers, medical practitioners, lawyers, accountants and so on. However, the world is not static and sectors are constantly changing and evolving.

Companies like the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) and Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) lost popularity in the late 1990’s with the advent of electronic mail. Today, the ubiquity of smartphones and so many other technological breakthroughs are making some courses irrelevant by the day and more previously neglected courses are gradually becoming hot-cakes. For instance, Computer Scientists and Software Engineers are the highest paid in the world today because of the enormous roles computers play today. In fact, nurses in some parts of the world are better paid and in higher demand than medical doctors.

THE TRUTH: Even though “professional” courses still have their coveted place in the world, you can still carve a path for yourself in the world even if it’s not the most sought-after route. The main thing is to become someone of value that has something useful to sell, which if you work hard enough, you can become irrespective of the field you choose.

Myth 4: JAMB regulates students’ scores to decrease the number of students seeking admission into federal universities.

Some people believe that JAMB regulates the scores of students or more specifically, they are of the notion that JAMB reduces students’ scores when good performances are high or when they are more than the number that universities are willing and capable of taking.  It’s no news that the Nigerian educational system today – the number of approved and recognized institutions of learning – is not very capable of meeting the high demands of young desperate students seeking tertiary education.

Since not up to half a million students out of the nearly 2 million that write JAMB every year usually obtain admission into the university, it has become a belief among candidates that JAMB reduces the scores of students so that fewer students will be given a chance for admission into the university and more will consider polytechnics or colleges of education.

THE TRUTH: Even though JAMB has not publicly said anything about this, it does not make much sense. A board that is being questioned every year by educational parastatals and criticized every day by the public for failure rates should not want to keep watching students fail at their hands. Ideally, the aim of controlling admission traffic is achieved using cut-off marks

Myth 5: JAMB uses negative marking strategy in scoring candidates.

For so many years, there have been controversies as to how JAMB marks students’ exam scripts and if JAMB uses a negative marking strategy – a strategy used to minimize students’ guessing of answers by subtracting marks for any questions failed. Negative marking is not a strategy adopted by any well-meaning exams board. 

The reason why it is not in your best interest to believe this myth is because it will result in defense tactic of leaving unanswered the questions you don’t know or are not sure of. What that means is that if you believe in negative marking, you will more likely not answer the questions you feel you will fail. By so doing, you will be reducing your chances of getting marks for such questions. After all, you won’t get any score for any question you don’t answer.

THE TRUTH: Even though JAMB has not commented publicly on this, the only form of negative marking that most likely exists is one where questions you leave blank are not marked at all and in that case, you get no credit for it. So, answer all your questions as best as you can. If you’re interested, you can also see how to answer JAMB questions.

All the best!

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  • Kiara Mba

    Thanks for the post....was very helpful

  • Rita Chioma

    Helpful post. Thanks a lot for sharing these facts.

    1. Ihenetu Daniel Ikenna

      You're most welcome, Rita! I'm glad I could help.