The University Grants Commission (UGC) on Wednesday suggested conducting exams for final semester year students only, as part of the guidelines presented to the HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank for the examination and academic calendar for universities. The students in intermediate semesters will be graded based on internal assessment of the present and previous semesters, as per the latest release by the HRD Ministry. For terminal semester students, the exams will be held in July.
The universities have also been asked to use innovative modes of examinations and assessments. The duration of exams will be reduced from three hours to two hours.
In case the situation does not get back to normal by July, 50 per cent marks can be graded on the basis of the pattern of internal evaluation adopted by the universities and the remaining 50 per cent marks can be awarded on the basis of performance in previous semester only (if available), suggests the committee. “The internal evaluation can be continuous evaluation, prelims, mid-semester, internal evaluation or whatever name is given for student progression,” it added.
For students in intermediate semesters, exams can be conducted if the situation gets better, however, precautions need to be adopted, as per the UGC report. “For intermediate semester/year students, the universities may conduct examinations, after making a comprehensive assessment of their level of preparedness, residential status of the students, status of COVID-19 pandemic spread in different regions or state and other factors,” the report suggests.
In a series of tweets, the HRD Minister said that an extension of six months will be given to MPhil or PhD students. The universities may conduct PhD, MPhil and practical examinations and viva-voice examinations through Skype or other meeting apps, and in case of intermediate semesters, the practical examinations may be conducted during the ensuing semesters.
An Expert Committee was set up by @HRDMinistry to assist UGC to address the concerns of university students, regarding academic calendar and examinations.
— Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank (@DrRPNishank) April 29, 2020
To address issues related to the coronavirus, a COVID-19 cell will be created in the UGC. Further, a COVID-19 cell will be constituted in every university which will be empowered to solve the issues of students related to academic calendar and examinations, as per the statement by the HRD Ministry.
The Expert Committee was headed by Prof RC Kuhad, Former Member, UGC and Vice-Chancellor, Central University of Haryana, Mahendergarh, Haryana along with other members.
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