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1.1            INTRODUCTION

All academic institutions have certain criteria for admitting students into examination hall. That is why keeping the accurate record of attendance and fees payments are very important. In almost all institutions in the developing countries, clearance is usually done manually using paper sheets and old file system approach.

Biometric identification of a person is fast, easy-to-use, precise, trustworthy and economical over traditional knowledge-based and token-based methods. A biometric system contains mainly an image capturing module, a feature extraction module and a pattern matching module. An image capturing module acquires the raw biometric data of a person using a sensor. Utilizing suitable algorithm/s feature extraction module improves the quality of the captured image. Database module stores the biometric template information of enrolled Persons. Pattern matching module compares the extracted features with the stored templates, which in-turn generates match score.

This approach discourages fraud, impersonation during the examination. As the level of security breaches and transaction fraud increases, the need for highly secured identification and personal verification technology is fast becoming apparent (Paul, Alane and Ari, 2004). Many organizations are trying to identify accurate, safe, and reliable techniques to protect access rights to their existing services or operations. Biometrics is the best answer to these concerns.


Examination malpractice is not a new phenomenon in Nigeria. The first examination malpractice in Nigeria occurred in 1914 during the Senior Cambridge Local Examination papers which were leaked before the scheduled date of examination (Maduemezia, 1998). Thus, examination malpractice which started at a low trend became more pronounced in 1970, involving persons other than the candidates. Since then examination malpractice became more advanced and sophisticated.

In recent times, examination malpractice has gone from simple ‘giraffing’ where students occasionally stretch their necks to catch glimpse of what they want to copy from other students scripts to a variety of sophisticated ones. These include;

·        Use of ‘Micro-chip’: writing very tiny summaries on pieces of paper, parts of the body, or on material is found within the venue.

·        Sorting: in which students negotiate with corrupt examiners for scores by rewarding the examiners in cash or kind.

·        Hand-held smart devices such as modern cell phones.

·        It has developed to the level where friends can impersonate their friends and sit for an exam for them.

These irregularities have in no doubt posed a vital question on the credibility of the examination system and standard.

The examination bodies like the schools have not turned a blind eye to all these practices and have introduced various policies like strict invigilation of the students during the examination exercise to cut down student’s communication during the examinations. Also, the spacing pattern during the examination is aimed at reducing any form of communication amongst students, even “girrafing”.

Institutions have gone as far as motivating the examiners and encourage them to cut down the excesses of the students during the examination.

However, in a very large class having a number of examination candidates averaging about 400 to 450 students, it has been discovered that some of these policies against examination malpractices introduced by the institutions may not be so effective due to the large number of students.

Take for instance, in a PHY202 examination, due to the number of students and the limited number of halls, the examiners may not be able to check all the excesses of the students. They examiners may also have to reduce the spacing between the candidates so that the hall will accommodate their large number. Because of the largeness of the class size, the students can maneuver the process and friends get to sign for each other in the absence of their colleagues. This practice goes to the extent of students writing examinations for each other because there is no way the examiner will know the eligible student facially.


The process for allowing students to sit for an examination has been through the presentation of medium of identification such as ID cards, library cards, fees clearance cards, photo cards, etc. This method of authenticating a student for an examination has an obvious problem such as presentation of fake clearance card, impersonation and so on.

The unethical manner associated with the examination is a grim issue that require the stakeholders in academic area to seek for alternative means of authenticating student for examination because, the manual paper-based clearance process is fundamentally flawed. This paper addressed all the aforementioned shortcomings and revealed the effectiveness of biometric system using fingerprint for examination clearance.

The proposed examination clearance system used fingerprint identification. In identification, the system recognizes an individual by comparing his/her biometrics with every record in the database.


The main objectives of this research are

·        To design and construct a device that uses the unique, distinguishable and permanent marker, in this case, the fingerprint to automatically verify the identity of a student during examination.

·        To reduce rate of corruption in the educational sector and increase the rate of self-confidence on students.

·        To demonstrate the possibility of computer technology in the satisfaction of human needs and also enforce strict security measures that ensure unregistered students do not write exams for other registered students.

·        To ensure impersonation of registered candidate is completely eradicated during the examination.


This project is geared towards harnessing the idea in modern biometric security technologies to authenticate the eligibility of a student to sit for an examination. This is achieved by taking the fingerprint of whoever that will be coming to register the course and who is to sit for the exam.

The project would help stop the practice of students sitting for examination for their friends thereby strengthening the authenticity of the results.


The pursuits of knowledge on the diverse area of biometric systems envisage its importance in providing strong authentication during examinations. This study shows that using the fingerprint biometrics have edge over other ways of identification. This play a pivotal role for establishing identity not just during student examinations but also for industries like law enforcement, forensic science community and with general public. Other significance shows that

·        The system would contribute in the area of stopping any activity of corruption in the educational sector among students, and student to teachers.

·        The impersonation which has eating the educational system there by encouraging laziness among students would be eliminated and standard of student educational performance would be increased.

·        Hard work would be encouraged as every registered student knows he/she must write the exam by him or herself.

1.7            SCOPE OF THE STUDY

The scope of the study is based on the West African Examination Council, a broad examination consisting of all countries in West Africa. Biometric fingerprints was introduced before the exam. This identity verification was capable of eradicating impersonation and by extension contributes towards behavioral improvement within the examination hall.

The design was done using vb.net with mysql as the database and also all necessary method of data collection to ensure the system meet up to acceptable standard was put into consideration.


The following are some factors, which acted as an impeachment or constraints to the progress of the project work;

a. Lack of Documented materials:  It was difficult to start the project initially because reference materials at my disposal are limited.

b. Financial constraint is another factors that limited the researcher in owning out this project effectively.

c. Reluctance by the respondents in giving information fearing that the information sought would be used to intimidate them or print a negative image about them.

To counter this, I carried a pilot study to establish the possible cause of non-compliance in filling the questionnaires and adjusted the questionnaire accordingly.

Also I encouraged the respondents to participate without holding back the information they might be having as the research instruments would not bear their names.

1.9            DEFINITION OF TERMS

·        DATABASE: A collection of related information which can be stored and retrieved.

·        EXAMINATION: A measure for the test of knowledge.

·        MALPRACTICES: This refers to negligence or misconduct

·        IMPERSONATION: General process of acting on behalf of a client.

·        IMPERSONATOR: A performed skilled at copying the manner or expression of another mime.

·        FINGER PRINT: An impression on a surface of the curves formed by the ridges on a fingertip.

·        BIOMETRICS: The use of measurable, biological characteristics such as fingerprints, or iris patterns to identify a person to an electronic system.

·        SECURITY ACCESS: Permission granted to users base on their identification.

·        AUTHENTI CATION: The process of identifying someone base on users name or password in security system.


This paper is structured as follows:

®   Chapter one gives the general overview of examination malpractice, biometrics and their importance in curbing examination malpractice

®   Chapter two presents the review of related work carried out in the FP biometric.

®   Chapter Three provides the methodology used in the research work, analysis of the present system and solutions giving by the proposed system.

®   Chapter four gives the system specification and designs of the proposed system

®   Chapter five gives the conclusion and recommendation of the whole work

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