PMC Holds Press Conference to Deal With MDCAT Crisis!
The PMC has been under heat this MDCAT season, facing backlash from students, instructors and notable figures alike. From internet connectivity issues as per PMC practice tests, incorrect answer keys, out-of-syllabus questions and operational issues with the online TEPS conducted exam, students were outraged and decided to take to social media and the streets.
Students also led online social media campaigns, spearheaded by Mr. Jibran Naisr, prominent lawyer and social activist.
PMC Press Conference
A press conference by the PMC, streamed on Facebook Live regarding the MDCAT was held on 9th October, 2021 to share the final results of the MDCAT and the data that came along with it. Click here to watch it.
It is clear that the PMC did not take responsibility for any of the concerns the students faced, and outrightly denied and invalidated the student’s grievances.
According to the statistics shared in the PMC MDCAT press conference:, 194,133 students took the exam, of which 68,688 passed, i.e. 35.4%, versus 55.8 % in 2020. In 2021 though, there was a 35% pass percentage.
PMC Result, Certificate and Equivalence
The PMC has finalized the result for the MDCAT. If you wish to check yours, click on this link.
Certificate is valid for two year and certificates are downloadable from the website. This year's exam was relatively tough, an equivalence of 65% or above applies to the student's last year's score basis. Click here to find your equivalency. The result will then be forwarded to the schools that they choose, states PMC
2021 MDCAT: Issues
Mr. Ali Raza, Vice President PMC, continued on the technical side of the discussion. He first emphasised on social media concerns, and wanted to engage with the issues accordingly:
Mr. Raza shared that every exam happened on a Local Area Network (LAN), not having any connection with the internet. He mentioned that the exams are saved on the tablet and the exam center server- of which the results in the form of secure data are with the PMC and are completely verified.
Skipped & Unattempted Questions
Mr. Raza explored two main categories:
a. Skipped questions
These pertain to questions moved past and not attempted afterwards.
b. Unattempted questions
These questions generally apply if time runs out and the students are not able to finish their exam in time.
The total questions generated for all students were 40.767,930, from which:
Skipped questions were 29,977 (0.074%) of the total questions.
Unattempted were 1819 (0.005%), (440 students missed less than 10 questions) a “negligible figure” according to Mr. Ali Raza.
Supposedly, there were 1-2 students who skipped questions and did not answer a single one, on whom the PMC will investigate further, stated PMC Vice President. Mr. Raza said this was an “attack on the PMC” through posts and social media propaganda, of which they have the “students' names, credentials which have been given to the authorities”.
Out-Of-Syllabus Questions and Incorrect Keys
According to Mr. Raza, Dr. Faisal Sultan, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services, requested for Quaid-e-Azam University to conduct an independent analysis of the MDCAT exam for “vague” questions. PMC allegedly welcomed with open hands the investigation. Mr. Raza stated that the post-exam analysis that the Quaid-e-Azam University conducted had no interference of any PMC personnel.
PMC Email with MDCAT Certificate
Mr. Raza shared that some students, around 7:30am on the 9th of October, received an email with the MDCAT certificate. The PMC IT Team was requested to investigate the error, which was that some certificates were automatically generated. “Some of the subject scores are not correct, but regardless, the final score is'', said Mr. Raza.
PMC’s Dismissal of Anti-PMC and MDCAT Campaign and Protest
According to Mr. Raza, this was a great example of how social media enables the spread of false news and misleads students. Mr. Raza purported the “false news” as “all lies”. Mr. Raza continued, emphasising on how important it is to get rid of these “vested groups with agendas”.
New Special Paper Review Option
The PMC is now conducting a special review paper option, led by Quaid-e-Azam University. Students requiring review can apply, get an appointment, have their papers de-encrypted and see the results. If there are any issues, the PMC will supposedly make it public and give the student their mark.
Mr. Kan further remarked “Lets see if all the narratives surrounding PMC are true or false. No other organization can give you this level of transparency. We are doing this because we are 100% confident every person in PMC has made every effort possible to make this right. Our system and our exam is also flawless.”
Students did not take lightly to the assertions made by the PMC during the press conference. There was a massive backlash on the PMC Facebook page where the event was streamed, garnering over 15.1K comments, 8.3K reactions and over 779 shares. The response was overwhelmingly negative. Commenters below called for justice, called the parties involved in the MDCAT and the PMC “actors” along with demanding PMC Vice President Mr. Ali Raza’s resignation.
There was an outrage not just on Facebook though, but also on other social media platforms. Students also took to Twitter to voice their concerns.
Above, students call the PMC”illegal”, a “mafia” and many others share negative sentiments against the organization in the wake of the PMC press conference. It was clear that the students were not satisfied by the points shared by the PMC during the talk and felt as though more justifications needed to be made, students were to be brought to justice, some stating more extreme measures such as PMC VP Ali Raza resigning and the entire organization shutting down.
Influential Figures’ Responses
Students were not the only parties raising their voices against the measures taken by PMC to sooth the public. M. Jibran Nasir, prolific lawyer and social activist also raised concerns with the PMC’s undertakings, showcasing irregularities in the PMC markings and shaming their refusal of engaging with the press. He posted a thread to “expose the PMC”.
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For years, Nearpeer has supported student concerns and demands when it comes to quality education in Pakistan. We still stand steadfast with the MDCAT aspirants. Stay tuned for more updates and share your thoughts in the comment box below.