From Derek Solomon’s Gardening With Birds in Zimbabwe, published by Birds of a Feather (Pty)Ltd, Harare,…
Before you embark on preparing for Learner Hunters and Guides examinations you might like to have a look at the results from the last couple of exams. Bear in mind the following requirements for passing.
- The pass mark is 60%.
- The candidate is expected to pass each exam individually and achieve an average 60% pass mark overall.
- If you obtain over 60% on three papers but fail a fourth you may re-write the one you failed at the following sitting.
- If you fail two or more papers you have to re-write them all.
224 candidates wrote four papers in this examination session, despite the newly introduced charge of US$25 per paper.
- Pass – 65
- Fail – 111
- Rewrite General Paper – 48
If we exclude those who had to re-write the General Paper then there was a 29% pass rate. If you only look at the pass rate on the General Paper then the pass rate falls to a stunning 18%,
Another 5 people wrote only one paper – re-writing the paper they presumably failed in the last session in February, 2019. Four out of the five passed their re-written paper.
Eleven people wrote the extra paper for Canoe Guides, 10 out of the 11 passed.
In February, 2020 the Learner Hunters and Guides examinations attracted 245 candidates, despite the charge of US$25 per paper.
Of these 182 candidates wrote all four papers. The results were as follows:
- Pass – 57
- Fail – 125
- Rewrite 1 paper – 12 (6 Habits & Habitats, 5 Law & 1 Firearms)
This means that the pass rate was roughly 30%, or to put it another way, only a third of the people writing the four papers passed.
I do not have access to any further details so cannot say how badly people failed, how nearly they passed, whether they failed because one paper was particularly disastrous, which paper really brought people down, etc. From talking to candidates, however, I would say that the problems arose from:
- Obscure questions that almost no one was prepared for
- Questions expressed in confusing terms
- Marks out of 50 – so if you answer a question incorrectly that carries 5 marks you have automatically lost 10% of the 40% you need to pass.
I know that one of the failures already had two levels of the very demanding South African equivalent (FAGASA – Field Guides of South Africa) and a great deal of experience guiding in South Africa, the DRC and Zimbabwe.
Another 30 people wrote only one paper – re-writing the paper they presumably failed in the last session in September, 2019. They all passed their re-written paper.