The universities will take exams using creative questions papers or assignments on shorter syllabus
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has approved a guideline for the public universities to hold examinations online and recover from the loss caused due to the Covid-19 outbreak from early last year.
According to the set of instructions, the universities will be able to take online examinations using creative questions or assignments on shorter syllabus instead of traditional question patterns.
The examinations will be taken through electronic devices that have both audio and video features such as computers, laptops or smart phones.
The UGC also directed the universities to ensure participation of all students after ensuring full supports.
“The guideline has been formulated to ensure that all the public universities can run their academic activities online and hold examinations properly,” UGC Member Prof Dil Afroza Begum told Dhaka Tribune after a virtual meeting with the vice-chancellors (VC) of public universities on Thursday.
The guideline would be sent to the Ministry of Education soon for approval, she said, adding that the decisions on the guideline were accepted by the VCs without any reservations.
The universities have been asked to take decisions in their academic council meetings regarding implementation of the guideline after May 24 when the universities reopen.
How will it happen online?
Talking with Dhaka Tribune, another UGC Member Prof Biswajit Chanda said that all the public universities must take initiatives to provide all facilities required for online education so that the students remain busy with academic activities.
According to the new guideline, instead of the conventional question system, students will have to answer creative questions from a shorter syllabus that will be prepared in a way that a student cannot answer without proper knowledge on the subject.
The university authorities will have to ensure that the students do not copy their answers or use any other unfair means during the exams. To this end, students can be given creative assignments, the guideline reads.
The viva-voce part of each subject will take longer when conducted online. Every day, not more than 12 students will be allowed in the oral exams – to be conducted by a committee comprised of externals and internal teachers for proper assessment.
The UGC also recommends taking ethical signs from the students, though there is no such practice at the universities of the country.
The test papers will have to be stored and saved in the device for one month after announcing the results.
The UGC guideline also stipulates that the universities can conduct laboratory tests online. However, if they fail to take an online laboratory test on any subject, then those will be taken in person in accordance with the hygiene rules once the current Covid situation becomes normal.
The public universities should take decisions on holding the exams in line with their academic council rules and regulations so that effective steps are taken to reduce session jams, reads the guideline.
Meanwhile, private universities since last year have been conducting online academic activities and enrolling students via online admission tests following the UGC directives.
Additionally, the Ministry of Education is taking initiatives to hold online classes and exams at all levels of education.