Baccalauréat : Programmable Calculators to be banned in 2018

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Programmable Calculators to be banned
High school students pass the baccalaureate in Strasburg High School, June 16, 2014 – Frederick Florin AFP

The department of Education has made a decision that for the 2018 baccauréat, programmable calculators are to be banned from the exams.  Students will have a choice to use either college calculators or special calculators which will incorporate an ‘exam’ button which will not allow access to the built in memory and stored equations.

Concern has grown over the last few years as manufacturers have made calculators more powerful allowing cheats and fraudsters to save the entire contents of the course on the internal memory of these calculators, rather than studying for the exam.

Fears are voiced that this decision was instead to be used as a way to boost the sales of the new calculators which will need to have an exam button on them to restrict their capabilities.  The ministry has denied this, and has added that disadvantaged will not be penalised for the extra cost as students will be offered the choice of suitable calculators at college.

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