This report presents pass rate statistics for the November 2016 Ordinary Level examination results. The year under review had no subject reseats as a result of examination question paper leakages.
The grade cut-off points for all the subjects were comparable to those of the previous years. There were no major changes in the grade thresholds and the grades are comparable to those of previous examination sessions. Any rise or fall in candidate performance in any subject would therefore, be attributed to teaching and learning processes in schools.
The statistics were analyzed and presented by candidate type and gender. Provincial pass rates were presented by subject and gender and the year- on- year comparisons were made to show trends in pass rates. The report, finally presents subject grade statistics by gender and province and Special Needs Candidates statistical analysis.
2.0 National Pass Rates
This section reveals national pass rates by candidate type, gender and location. It also presents a comparative analysis of the November 2015 and 2016 examination results.
Table 1: 2016 National Pass Rate by Candidate Type: Grade C or Better
|Candidate Type||Entry||Number of candidates who wrote 5 Subjects and above||Number of candidates who passed 5 or more subjects with Grade C or better||% Pass Rate|
|School Candidates||174 394||155 492||46 587||29,96|
|Private Candidates||116 612||21 747||2 914||13,40|
The table reflects the total number of school and private candidates who sat for the November 2016 O level examination. School candidates who wrote five or more subjects were 155 492 and 46 587 obtained Grade C or better in 5 or more subjects, yielding a 29,96 % pass rate. Private candidates who wrote 5 or more subjects were 21 747, and 2 914 obtained Grade C or better in 5 or more subjects, which also translates into a percentage pass rate of 13,40.
Table 2: 2016 National Pass Rate by Gender and Candidate Type
|Gender||Entry||Number of candidates who wrote 5 subjects and above||Number of candidates who passed 5 or more subjects with Grade C or better||% Pass Rate|
|Female School Candidates||87 462||79 513||22 140||27,84|
|Female Private Candidates||68 365||12 213||1 401||11,47|
|Total Female Candidates||155 827||91 726||23 541||25,66|
|Male School Candidates||86 931||76 079||24 447||32,13|
|Male Private Candidates||48 247||9 334||1 513||16,2|
|Total Male Candidates||135 178||85 413||25 960||30,39|
The table shows that the total number of female candidates was 155 827 and, of these, 91 726 wrote 5 or more subjects with 23 541 passing 5 or more subjects, thus translating to a percentage pass rate of 25,66. The total number of female school candidates was 87 462 of these, 79 513 wrote 5 or more subjects and 22 140 obtained 5 or more subjects giving us a percentage pass rate of 27,84. There were 68 365 private female candidates of which 12 213 wrote 5 or more subjects resulting in 1 401 obtaining 5 or more subjects yielding a pass rate of 11,47%.
The total number of male candidates was 135 178 and of these 85 413 wrote 5 or more subjects and 25 960 passed 5 or more subjects translating to a percentage pass rate of 30,39. The total number of male school candidates was 86 931 and 76 079 wrote 5 or more subjects and 24 447 passed 5 or more subjects translating to percentage pass rate of 32,13%. Male private candidates were 48 247 and 9 334 wrote 5 or more subjects and of these 1 513 obtained 5 or more subjects resulting in a percentage pass rate of 16,2%.
The results show that males performed better than females. The overall pass rate for males was 30,39% and that of females was 25,16%. A similar trend was observed in the November 2015 examinations where male candidates performed better than females.
3.0 Year on Year Comparisons of National Pass Rates for School Candidates
Pass rate statistics from 2012 to 2016 were presented to show the trend in performance.
Table 3: Pass Rate Trends over 5 years
|% Pass Rate Grade C or better||18,4%||20,72%||22,38%||27,86%||29,96%|
The table and the graph above show national pass rates for school candidates from 2012 to 2016. There is an upward trend in performance from 2012 to 2016. There was an increase of 2, 10% from 2015 to 2016 resulting in 2016 candidates performing better than the 2015 cohort.
Table 4: Year on Year Comparisons of national pass rates by candidate type for 2015 to 2016
|Number of Candidates who wrote 5 or more subject||Number of Candidates who passed 5 or more subjects with grade C or better||Percentage Pass Rates|
|School Candidates||2016||155 492||46 587||29,96|
|2015||156 418||43 581||27,86|
|Private Candidates||2016||21 747||2 914||13,40|
|2015||23 235||2 791||12,01|
The results shown in the table and the graph reflect that examination results for November 2016 were better than those for November 2015. In the November 2016 examinations, a pass rate of 29,96% was recorded for school candidates as compared to 27, 86% for the same type of candidates in 2015. Therefore, there was a rise of 2,10% percentage points from the November 2015 results. The same scenario is also noticeable on private candidates.
Table 5: Year on Year Comparison of School Candidates by Gender 2015-2016
|Number of Candidates who wrote 5 or more subjects||Number of Candidates who passed 5 or more subjects with grade C or better.||National Pass Rates|
|FEMALES||79 372||79 513||12 738||22 140||25,33||27,84|
|MALES||77 046||76 079||15 772||24 447||30,47||32,13|
Results reflected in the table and the graph reveal that male candidates performed better than female candidates in both the November 2015 and 2016 examination sessions. The difference in performance was significant across the examination sessions under comparison. The reasons could be attributed to biological factors were issues to do with maturity come into play. There is need for research to be conducted to establish why male candidates perform better than their female counterparts.
4.0 Subject Pass Rates:
Table 7: Subject Pass Rates by Candidate Type
|Subject code||Subject name||Candidates Status||Candidates who took the exam||Grade C or better per Subject||% percentage pass rate of candidates who got Grade C or better|
|1122||ENGLISH LANGUAGE||School Candidates||162 239||40 297||24,84|
|Private Candidates||63 632||14 555||22,87|
|2013||LITERATURE IN ENGLISH||School Candidates||12 090||6 749||55,82|
|2042||RELIGIOUS STUDIES A||School Candidates||33 489||9 434||28,17|
|Private Candidates||4 434||838||18,90|
|2043||RELIGIOUS STUDIES B||School Candidates||6 366||3 686||57,90|
|2167||HISTORY||School Candidates||113 334||51 163||45,14|
|Private Candidates||20 138||6 746||33,50|
|2248||GEOGRAPHY||School Candidates||128 414||55 762||43,42|
|Private Candidates||31 573||12 007||38,03|
|2283||ECONOMICS||School Candidates||1 769||880||49,75|
|3155||NDEBELE||School Candidates||23 128||12 920||55,86|
|Private Candidates||2 532||1 070||42,26|
|3156||TONGA||School Candidates||1 287||571||44,37|
|3159||SHONA||School Candidates||120 586||64 648||53,61|
|Private Candidates||19 989||9 060||45,32|
|School Candidates||129 489||26 918||20,79|
|Private Candidates||77 453||19 691||25,42|
|5006||INTEGRATED SCIENCE||School Candidates||151 717||60 043||39,58|
|Private Candidates||53 944||24 035||44,56|
|5008||BIOLOGY||School Candidates||23 138||13 204||57,07|
|Private Candidates||2 348||576||24,53|
|5009||PHYSICAL SCIENCE||School Candidates||7 915||5167||65,28|
|5034||AGRICULTURE||School Candidates||48 571||30 116||62,00|
|5055||PHYSICS||School Candidates||6 767||4 140||61,18|
|5071||CHEMISTRY||School Candidates||6 842||5 268||77,00|
|5097||HUMAN AND SOCIAL BIOLOGY||School Candidates||428||231||53,97|
|6015||ART||School Candidates||1 768||999||56,50|
|6035||WOODWORK||School Candidates||3 741||2 050||54,80|
|6051||FASHION AND FABRICS||School Candidates||21 893||12 674||57,89|
|6064||FOOD AND NUTRITION||School Candidates||4 946||3 327||67,27|
|6078||HOME MANAGEMENT||School Candidates||61||27||44,26|
|7014||COMPUTER STUDIES||School Candidates||5 763||4 577||79,42|
|7035||BUILDING STUDIES||School Candidates||9 630||5 301||55,05|
|7049||TECHNICAL GRAPHICS||School Candidates||2 416||1 273||52,69|
|7103||COMMERCE||School Candidates||90 185||33 032||36,63|
|Private Candidates||28 698||12 431||43,32|
|7104||COMMERCIAL STUDIES TYPING||School Candidates||33||27||81,82|
|7105||COMMERCIAL STUDIES PROCESSING||School Candidates||122||93||76,23|
|7106||COMMERCIAL STUDIES ARITHMETIC||School Candidates||6||1||16,7|
|7112||PRINCIPLES OF ACCOUNTS||School Candidates||32 540||21 146||64,98|
|Private Candidates||7 841||3 702||47,21|
|7166||BUSINESS STUDIES||School Candidates||4 552||3 052||67,05|
The table reflects percentage pass rates for different subjects offered at Ordinary Level.
Table 7: Year on year comparison of Science Subjects
|Integrated Science 5006||31,52||39,58|
|Physical Science 5009||71,57||65,28|
|Human and Social Biology 5097||34,59||53,97|
The table shows a notable improvement in pass rates for Science subjects. There was a significant improvement in Integrated Science (39,58%), Chemistry (77%), Human and Social Biology (53,97%) and Geography (43,42%). These improvements are in line with Government thrust in the teaching and learning of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects.
5.0 Provincial Pass Rates
The national provincial pass rates are presented below.
Table 9: National Pass Rate by Province
|Province||% Pass Rate|
The table and the graph show national pass rates by province. It can be noted that Masvingo had the highest pass rate of 31,12% followed by Manicaland (30,64%) and Mashonaland East (30,63%). Matebeleland North recorded the least percentage pass rate of 22, 77.
Table 10: School Candidates Provincial Pass Rates by Gender
|Number of candidates who wrote 5 or more subjects||Number of candidates who passed 5 or more subjects with Grade C or better||% Provincial pass rates|
|Male||8 228||2 603||31,64|
|Manicaland||Females||12 119||3 667||30,26|
|Mashonaland East||Females||9 675||2 955||30,54|
|Midlands||Female||10 377||2 849||27,45|
|Male||9 341||3 319||35,53|
|Masvingo||Female||10 072||2 948||29,27|
|Male||10 222||3 696||36,16|
|Mashonaland Central||Female||5 746||1296||22,55|
|Mashonaland West||Female||8 312||1 912||23,00|
|Male||9 090||2 556||28,12|
|Matebeleland South||Female||4 580||1 167||25,48|
|Bulawayo||Female||4 863||1 388||28,54|
|Male||3 999||1 127||28,18|
The table reflects that in the majority of provinces, male candidates performed better than female candidates. Bulawayo and Harare provinces had female candidates performing better than their male counterparts.
Table 11: National Pass Rate by Subject and Province
|Literature in English 2013||53,2||53,7||66,1||55,1||59,1||60,0||65,6||58,9||44,8||43,1|
|Religious Studies A 2042||21,6||25,5||32,5||24,3||27,0||29,1||25,7||27.4||25,0||30,9|
|Religious Studies B 2043||48,0||56,2||71,1||51,9||55,1||41,9||73,6||42,6||63,0||39,0|
|Additional Maths( Non-caculator) 4033||–||–||–||–||–||100||–||–||–||100|
|Additional Maths (Calculator) 4034||64||74,4||55,7||80||34,4||84,2||77,8||46,2||71,0||50|
|Integrated Science 5006||43,3||43,5||41,3||33,1||42,4||43,0||38,9||38,3||33,6||38,3|
|Physical Science 5009||60,5||63,0||68,5||55,1||68,0||67,0||71,4||66,2||51,6||28,8|
|Human and Social Biology 5097||48,1||45,5||56,1||47.1||68,5||51,7||48,1||57,1||28,8||48,0|
|Fashion and Fabrics 6051||52,2||59,5||54,3||48,7||58,3||66,3||54,2||51,4||61,7||69,3|
|Food and Nutrition 6064||54,9||77,2||73,8||64,4||74,4||82,7||69,8||56,3||89,9||53,0|
|Home Management 6078||–||65,2||–||–||14,3||62,5||–||31,3||–||–|
|Computer Studies 7014||68,1||83,9||85,8||81,7||83,9||78,5||79,5||80,3||78,4||57,8|
|Commercial Studies Typing
|Commercial Studies Processing 7105||–||100||–||–||42,1||95||52,9||–||–||–|
|Commercial Studies Arithmetic 7106||–||–||–||–||–||0||–||100||20||–|
|Principles of Accounts
|Business Studies 7116||62,5||81,3||62,2||84,5||70,6||67,7||64,7||65,8||70,7||45,6|
The table shows subject pass rates by province. It can be noted that some subjects recorded 100% pass rates while others had very low pass rates. This however can be misleading if comparison is made by considering percentage pass rates. The subjects however should be grouped according to candidature, so that high entry subjects are compared on their own, followed by medium, low entry, and very low entry subjects. The reasons for difference in performance across subjects could be established through research.
6.0 Special Needs Candidates
This is the first time ZIMSEC is reporting on Special Needs Candidates’ performance for the November series, so there is no comparison with any other results.
Table: Performance of Special Needs Candidates
|Category||Entry||Number who wrote 5 or more||Number who passed 5 or more||Pass Rate|
|Hard of Hearing||151||114||6||5,3|
From the table above it can be noted that Enlarged Print Special Needs Candidates performed better than Hard of Hearing and Braille Candidates.
Generally, candidates performed better in the November 2016 examination as compared to 2015.
Zimbabwe School Examinations Council