Law school exams: SRC demands representation on committee investigating mass failures
The Students Representative Council of the Ghana School of Law is demanding representation on the Sophia Adinyra committee, set up to investigate mass failings of the professional bar exams in the country, ABC News Ghana can confirm.
This, the body says, is to offer students an opportunity to submit recommendations to the committee regarding the seemingly disturbing issue to stakeholders.
“The SRC has not been invited on the committee but I think it will be good if we have a representation on the committee. Even if we don’t, we hope the committee invites us to also make recommendations. We know the committee has been set up and we are just waiting for the committee to come up with its report, ” President of the Students Representative Council (SRC), Emmanuel Kwabena Owusu Amoah told ABC News Ghana in an interview.
Emmanuel Amoah attributed the mass failure of students to the way and manner in which the law school examinations are conducted, citing the setting of questions outside the scope of study as one of the main challenges.
“We believe as students that the Mass failure is mostly due to the conduct of the examination and the setting of questions or probably the marking of the question. And we want these to be investigated. Sometimes you go to the exam hall and you meet questions outside the scope of the course you are sitting for or syllable laid down by the school. Once students are ambushed, it will become difficult for students to pass the said exams” he explained in the interview with ABC News Ghana.
He further noted that other issues that may contribute to these failings are the lack of feedback from the independent examination body which handles examinations in the school.
According to him, in order to remedy the situation, the Independent body assigned to oversee examinations in the school should make available marking schemes as well as explain what they require from students in the answering of questions – two things he believes will help both students and lecturers adapt to the situation.
“Aside the exams, we feel there is no feedback from the independent examination body that marks the exams. We wish the marking scheme is made available to students so that we will be able to also prepare for subsequent exams, we will know where the students went wrong, the lecturers will know what they are not doing right. If there is no transparency in that regard, then definitely these issues will persist which means that even if you are repeating, you don’t even know what you are doing wrong” he added.
The SRC of the Ghana Law School hopes these challenges will be addressed quickly in order for ‘sanity’ to prevail in the space.
“I know that a lot of my colleagues are not happy with the current situation and with the current committee set up, we hope that the case is pursued to the last end and the problem is solved. We are hopeful that the issue will be addressed. What we as students want is getting our issues addressed no matter the procedure or the approach that will be used in addressing the challenge” he concluded.
Mass failing of bar examinations
A growing concern that has been a worry to many Ghanaians, especially students of law has been the mass failings that characterize their professional examinations, preventing them from attaining certificates as lawyers.
Out of the 474 students who sat the 2017/2018 final exams, only 91 students passed and will be called to the BAR.
To press home their demands for lasting solutions, Law students from the Ghana School of Law in March stormed the premises of parliament to present a petition to the leadership of parliament concerning their predicaments in the school especially the unprecedented number of students failing the final examination at the law school.
It is as a result of this that the Ghana Legal Council (GLC) has constituted a Committee to look into the recent mass failure in the Professional Law Examinations.
The unprecedented failures in the past few years have raised concerns among prospective students and the general public.