This year the Ministry of Education began testing a new form of the matriculation exam. In the future, the so-called "four-in-one" matriculation exam will replace the traditional school matriculation exam in individual subjects with only one graduation thesis with a defence.
The project involved 49 pupils from 9 schools across the Czech Republic. Their students can choose whether they will take the traditional state matriculation exam this year or take part in testing the new form of matriculation.
So far, not only pupils but also school principals are satisfied with the innovation. According to the director of the Hotel School in Poděbrady, PhDr. Jana Podoláková, "the matriculation will no longer be like a recitation, but like an application".
And what does the change consist in? The state matriculation exam in the Czech Republic consists of two parts. The first is the common part, which consists of a test in Czech language and literature and a test in a foreign language or mathematics. Pupils can also take up to two optional exams in the test subjects. The second part is a profile part. This consists of oral examinations in Czech language and literature and two to three compulsory profile examinations in selected subjects. The innovation of the new matriculation examinations lies in the profile part. The common part will be taken by all students equally. In the new matriculation examinations, the profile part will be replaced by an oral examination in Czech language and literature and a comprehensive paper. This is a kind of 'bachelor's' thesis which students must defend before a committee. Part of the text must be written in English and part in another foreign language. Within 45 minutes, the teachers will examine the student in both language and theoretical subjects.
The Ministry of Education foresees a change in the matriculation exam in the Education Policy Strategy 2030+. Its testing is to take place this year, and even the following year. The idea behind the change is that the comprehensive work should link the matriculation exam with practice. The same opinion is shared by students, who enjoy the linking of knowledge gained in practice with theory and the opportunity to choose their own topic for the comprehensive final paper.
We shall see what kind of response this "test" form of the matriculation examination brings. Perhaps we will soon see a big change and the matriculation exam will not consist of a box of prescribed questions as we remember it from our student years.