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The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) is an examination board established by law to determine the examinations required in the public interest in English-speaking West African countries, to conduct the examinations and to award certificates comparable to those of equivalent examining authorities internationally.

The West African Examination Council (WAEC) has outlined some directives that candidates sitting for the 2023 BECE and WASSCE must follow. Below are the directions to candidates before, during and after the examination.

1. Report to the Supervisor of the examination hall at least thirty minutes before the time shown for the paper.

2. Candidates who arrive late will not be permitted to write the examination. For the avoidance of doubt, candidates are deemed to be late when the Supervisor HAS GIVEN THE ORDER TO START WORK.

3. Note that Supervisors and Invigilators have been authorised to search all before they are allowed to enter or leave the examination hall. They are also permitted to search candidates wearing head coverings including veils before they are allowed admission to the examination hall. Officials should request such candidates to remove their head coverings/veils before they are searched. Candidates should be allowed to wear their head coverings/veils after the search.

4. You are obliged to ensure no unauthorised material(s) is/are on, under or around your table desk. If any of such is found, you would be held liable.

5. The timetable shows the actual time writing begins but you will be allowed five minutes at the beginning of each paper to complete your particulars on the front cover of the answer booklet/sheet. You are not to write anything in the answer booklet/sheet during this period. The time specially allocated for reading through question papers or studying maps, etc., is included in the total time allowed for the papers unless the rubric states otherwise.

6. Read very carefully the general directions that are given on the cover page of the question paper. You will not gain extra marks if you answer more than the number of questions you are asked to answer. Much time may be wasted in writing down information not asked for.

7. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should a candidate use any index number other than the one given by the Council. Write your full index number, your name, the title of the paper and the date of examination clearly on every answer booklet.

8. Where a candidate fails to complete the cover page of his/her answer booklet as specified in the instructions, his/her result shall be withheld pending the cancellation of his/her subject result by the appropriate Committee of Council.

9. Where a candidate, in contravention of the instructions to candidates, writes with a pencil instead of ink or shades with ink instead of pencil, his/her result shall be withheld pending the cancellation of his/her subject result by the appropriate Committee of Council.

10. Write on both sides of the paper unless the instruction on the question paper prohibits this and leave a margin at both right-hand and left-hand edges. Leave two lines between answers where there are sub-sections to the same question. Begin the answer to each full question on a fresh page. Do not leave blank pages between answers.

11. You must do all rough work in your answer booklet. (You should not bring any paper for rough work with you into the examination room). When you have finished the rough work, cross it out neatly. You will not lose marks for doing rough work in your answer booklet.

12. Write the number of the question clearly at the beginning of each answer. If the question has sub-sections, show these also clearly. Do not copy the question. Be careful to use the same system of numbering as that on the question paper.

13. Remember that grammar, punctuation and spelling will be taken into account. Write your
answers with pen. You should use a good ball-point pen. Pencils will be used only for diagrams and for multiple-choice objective tests.

14. Bring mathematical sets for Mathematics. If you are offering Pre-Technical Skills, you must bring your own drawing board and instruments.

15. Do not waste time on questions that may leave you with no time to answer other questions. No mark is given for irrelevant answers.

16. If you decide to leave the examination room before the end of the period allotted to the paper, you must not take your question paper away with you; you must hand it over with your script to the Supervisor. You may, however, return at the end of the period to collect your question paper.

17. As soon as you are told that time is up, ensure that the cover page of the answer booklet has your full index number and name written on it. Wait until your script has been collected and you are told to leave.


18. Do not leave your answers in such a position that another candidate can read them.

19. No communication whatsoever will be allowed between candidates in the examination.

20. If it is discovered that you have either copied from other candidates or given opportunity to other candidates to copy from you or communicated dishonestly with other candidates, your papers will be cancelled.

21. Candidates whose examination results have been cancelled for resorting to dishonest means may be refused re-entry to future examinations.

22. Candidates sitting in the examination room are not permitted to have in their desks or their possession, any electronic device with which they could obtain external assistance, book, memorandum, notes or papers except the correct question paper and answer booklet given out by the supervisor/invigilator.

23. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should any candidate take Mobile Phone/Smart Watch Phone or any electronic communication device into the examination room.

24. Candidates should not take any used or unused answer booklet out of the Examination Room. Candidates disregarding this caution are liable to the same penalty as those who may be detected for dishonesty.

25. Candidates guilty of disorderly conduct or causing disturbance in the Examination Room will be expelled from the examination.

26. The Council reserves the right to cancel the results of candidates if it believes that they have been involved in irregularities before, during or after the examination.

27. It is a criminal offence punishable by law to engage in any examination malpractice [WAEC Law: Act 719 (2006)]. You are hereby requested to comport yourself strictly in accordance with the regulations bearing in mind that in addition to having your examination results cancelled, you may be prosecuted in court.

28. All requests for amendment of any information on bio-data will only be considered during and after registration. No amendment of the candidate’s date of birth would be entertained after the release of results.


These instructions should be carefully followed by candidates during the objective tests.

29. You must use only the pencils supplied by WAEC. You are required to bring a pencil sharpener, an eraser and a ruler.

30. You must write your full index number and name on the question paper.

31. The answer sheets are pre-printed with candidates’ names, index numbers and test codes. You are required to re-shade the machine shading of your index number and test code within the limits of the spaces provided.

32. All index numbers and answers must be shaded in pencil. Pens must NOT be used under any circumstances to shade index numbers and answers. The scoring machine can only read pencil marks; it is therefore necessary that you use only the 2B PENCIL in shading your index number and answers.

33. To record your index number, you must shade carefully the spaces provided for the index number. An example has been given on the cover of each question paper, this must be carefully followed.

The shading should cover the full width and length of the response position. The objective answer sheets are pre-printed with candidates’ names and index numbers; you should make sure that you have the correct answer sheet which bears your own index number and name.

34 Answer spaces must be shaded clearly and completely. Note also that the shading must not continue beyond the two lines. Failure to shade the answer space may result in a loss of marks. Candidates should find no difficulty in making suitable marks if they sharpen their 28 pencils to a fine point, and then rub the point gently on paper to make it slightly light. If a candidate finds genuine difficulty in making suitable marks as described above, it is better to over-mark, than to under-mark.

35. You must shade ONE AND ONLY ONE answer-space for each question. Candidates should note that marking two responses to one question automatically gives them no score for the question. Therefore if you shade an answer space in error, erase the wrong shading completely and shade the correct answer space. If a candidate makes a poor erasure, and substitutes a new answer, there is the danger that the computer scanner will read the erasure as a mark and give no score.

36. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES must the objective answer sheet be folded or crumpled or damaged. The computer scanner will reject such answer sheets.

37. Candidates are further asked to note that since the West African Examinations Council processes over three million answer sheets per year, it is quite impossible for each one to be given individual human scrutiny. It is therefore the clear responsibility of the candidate to complete his Objective Answer Sheet exactly as described in these instructions.


38. When question papers are given out, no candidate should start work before the order to start is given. Furthermore, when the order “stop work” is given, candidates should immediately put down their pens or pencils.

Any candidate found working on a paper before the order is given to start work or found still writing when the order to stop work is given commits an irregularity and will be penalised accordingly.

39. Candidates must write the examination at centres assigned to their school by WAEC only. Candidates who write the examination at any other centre may not have their result(s) processed.


40. Calculators are not permitted for the examination.


41. Under no circumstances should mobile phones be brought into the examination hall.







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