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Addis Ababa has been selected as one of the pilot cities to conduct the grade 12 national university entrance exams online.

“Preliminary preparations are being made to administer the exams online in the city,” stated Zelema Mulatu, (PhD) Head of Addis Ababa City Education Bureau.

The Bureau has begun securing the necessary resources, including computers, laptops, and tablets, for the online exams. Private schools within the city have also been advised to commence preparations.

While the entire exam will not be administered online, selected students in Addis Ababa will participate in the online pilot program. Details regarding the specific subjects and selection process for online examinees have not yet been announced.

In preparation for this new format, the Ministry of Education last week stated that students will be given multiple opportunities to practice online exams and receive coaching to familiarize themselves with the online testing platform.

The traditional paper-based exam schedule remains in place for the majority of students across the nation. Social science exams will be conducted from August 9 to 11, while natural science exams will be held from August 15 to 17, both online and on paper at universities.

The past two years have witnessed an alarming trend in Ethiopia’s educational landscape, as a staggering 97% of the nationwide students failed their Grade 12th exams.

Last year, close to 850, 000 students from 1,328 high schools took the exams inside public universities. The results saw only 3.2% of the total students score the passing mark.

This is not the first time Ethiopia wanted to conduct its exams online. In 2020, the Ministry of Education announced that grade 12 university entrance examinations would be administered online. There were close to half a million grade 12 students at the time, and the ministry, in its plan that did not materialize, intended to distribute tablets to the students.

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