The state government revised the state board’s curriculum and introduced updated textbooks for class XI in 2018-19 and for class XII in 2019-20.
After a delay of four months, the entrance test took place on September 13th. A team of experts analyzed the paper and provided the page numbers from physics, chemistry and biology textbooks from which the questions were asked.
In the textbooks of classes XI and XII, 174 out of 180 questions were dealt with. This is a big improvement over 2017, when around 60% of the questions were covered in the old curriculum.
Experts said that even an average student preparing with only textbooks would easily score over 300 in NEET this year, as more than 60% of the questions were direct questions from the textbooks.
“Tamil Nadu State Board students should not feel inferior to CBSE students. The new textbook has filled that gap and both are on a level playing field, ”said Professor Rita John, Head of Theoretical Physics Department at the University of Madras.
State Board textbooks covered 99% of physics questions. Of 90 questions in the Biology Department, 87 were covered in State Board textbooks.
“Analysis of the question paper found that the State Board’s biology textbooks covered more questions than NCERT textbooks in NEET this year,” said S Shameem, associate director of the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT).
In chemistry, 43 out of 45 textbook questions were asked. “If the students understand the concepts, they can answer all 45 questions,” said one subject matter expert.
The new textbooks have been significantly improved after the curriculum was revised. “These are interactive textbooks that can lead to other online resources for students who want to learn more,” Shameem said.