Ready exam schedule soon after lockdown, panel tells varsities


Thiruvananthapuram: All universities in Kerala have been directed to publish the schedule of their pending exams within one week after the COVID-19 lockdown is lifted. The recommendation was made by a committee headed by Dr B Ekbal which also said that a list of preference should be prepared for conducting the exams.

The panel's report, submitted to Higher Education Minister K T Jaleel, says exams could be held even on holidays and that initially, last semester exams have to be conducted. The exam time-table has to be planned in such a way that first semester classes could be started by July 1 and that the date may be advanced to June with government clearance.

Exams have to be divided into three sections – those disrupted following lockdown; exams for students whose classes are over and those for students whose classes are yet to be competed.

Regarding last semester exams, the panel says centralized valuation is needed. All health precautions should be taken for the purpose, it adds. But in case lockdown is extended, the answer sheets have to be sent to the houses of teachers. Digital valuation is ruled out as the facility is not in place. Moreover, an external agency cannot be trusted for the task, says the report. For semesters yet to be completed, the minimum hours have to be dedicated for classes and exams held.

The panel also says that all universities should take a joint decision on admissions, academic schedule, continuous evaluation, exam time-table, valuation, results, sports and arts festivals and union elections. A committee comprising representatives of all universities should be constituted for the purpose.

Other suggestions of the committee include preparation of question banks, online question papers, online marking and use of mobile app for entry of marks. A workshop could be held for the purpose, it says. Moreover, online classes can be conducting with the platform of ASAP, it adds.

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