Only 27 percent of the 3,409 graduates who appeared the Bhutan Civil Service Examination’s (BCSE) preliminary examination qualified. The cutoff point was 50 percent.

The Royal Civil Service Commission (RCSC), which conducts the examination, declared the result yesterday.

The preliminary exam (PE) this year screened 2,482 graduates, qualifying 927 graduates to sit for the main examination next month.

The performance of graduates this year is three times lower than the PE performance of graduates who appeared the examination last year.

In the previous year, of the 3,536 graduates who appeared the PE, 2,659 secured the 50 percent cut off. The pass percentage was around 75 percent last year.

A graduate, Rinzin Lhamo, who studied civil engineering in India, said that the PE this year was tough. “The language part of the question was difficult for me.”

She said that she is not surprised with the pass percentage of PE this year. “But 73 percent not getting through is shocking.”

A graduate from Gaedu College of Business Studies, Kelzang Jigme, said that the PE questions were different and tough.

He said that the PE questions of the previous years were repeated and expected. “This year, the questions were all unexpected. Some of my friends who performed exceedingly well in the college couldn’t perform in the PE.”

Last year, 3,536 graduates appeared the PE and 3,409 graduates appeared this year.

Meanwhile, the 927 graduates who passed the PE will sit for the BCSE to compete for 494 slots in the civil service. This means, at least two graduates will compete for a slot in the main examination.

Human resource officer with the RCSC’s exam division, Jigme Norbu, said that the percentage of graduates qualifying for the main examination has dropped.  “The objective of conducting the PE is to ensure minimum standard required of a candidate.”

He said that the exact number of candidates in each category would be confirmed after registration. “We allow the students to chose their category in the main examination as per their interest.”

The RCSC announced that the time for the candidate to appeal for the review of result is from August 24-30.