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The University Grants Commission (UGC), which is the higher education regulation authority has released the guidelines for the final year students on July 6, 2020. UGC has decided against scrapping exams for the final year students and colleges and universities are being recommended to evaluate the graduating batch through either an online, offline or blended mode exam. Out of a total of 755 universities across India, 366 are planning to conduct exams in August or September, as per the revised guidelines issued by the UGC. Even after facing a lot of opposition from the students and parents, UGC is still in favour of conducting exams.
According to the UGC, 194 universities are already done with their final-year exams and 27 private universities that were set up during 2019-20 have no student in the final year yet. Out of 755 universities, 120 are deemed, 274 are private, 40 are central universities, and 321 are state universities.
UGC Guidelines for Final Year Exams 2019-20
As the UGC has decided to go ahead with the exams, the following guidelines have been issued with regard to the same -
Exams to be Completed by September-End: UGC has also taken a decision to make changes to the alternate calendar and advise the institutions to conduct exams by September end. Final-year exams are important to evaluate the students' performance. Therefore, all universities across India will have to complete the final-year exams.
Universities Have the Flexibility to Choose Exam Mode: Universities across the country can choose online/ offline or blended (online+offline) mode to conduct the final-year exams.
Special Chance to Appear for Exams: The students who will not be able to take the final semester or final year exam can appear for a special exam after September. And those who are unable to clear the exam will be given a chance to improve.
Students with Backlogs Must Clear the Exams: UGC has not granted any relaxation to students with backlogs. Final-year students who have backlogs will have to appear for the exams conducted by the respective university/ college.
Universities to Follow a 6-Day Week Pattern: All the universities have been advised to follow a 6-day week pattern in order to make up for the loss of remaining session of 2019-20 and the for 2020-21.
Universities to Develop Virtual Classrooms and VC Facilities: Every institute should be equipped with video conferencing facilities and the universities must ensure that all the teaching staff is trained with the use of technology. The faculty should be adequately trained to use ICT and online teaching tools so that they can complete about 25% of the syllabus through online teaching and 75% syllabus through offline teaching. They can also opt for virtual labs set up by MHRD to facilitate science/ engineering/ technology streams students.
Universities to Focus on Mentor-Mentee Counselling: The universities need to focus more on mentor-mentee counselling through a dedicated portal on the university website for offering timely guidance to the students. Also, the supervisor and the faculty assigned to each student should maintain regular communication with the students.
Universities to Record the Travel/ Stay History of the Students and the Staff- Universities have also been directed to maintain a record of the travel/stay history of the students and staff when they were away from the university during the lockdown. The universities also need to strictly adhere to all the preventive measures and precautions to reduce the spread of coronavirus.
The regulator had come up with an indicative academic calendar for higher education institutes on April 29 in which it had mentioned that universities should conduct their final-year exams from July 1-15, 2020 and announce the results by the end of the month.
The UGC has come up with revised guidelines for the same. On June 24, the government had asked the UGC to reconsider its “guidelines on exams and academic calendar for the Universities due to COVID-19 and the subsequent lockdown”.
The decisions are based on the recommendations of a committee headed by the Haryana Central University VC RC Kuhad.
Highlights of the SOPs released by UGC
UGC along with the MHRD has also released the Standard Operating Procedure (SOPs) for conducting the pending university and college exams for the final year students. The SOPs are listed below.
- No overcrowding at the entry and exit points.
- Students with cough, fever, cold should be made to sit in another room or they can appear for the exam another day.
- Downloading of Aarogya Setu app is recommended for all the students and staff.
- The state government should issue instructions to all local authorities to issue movement passes to the invigilators and all personnel who are involved in the conduct of the exam.
- The admit / identity cards which are issued to the students should be treated as a pass for the students' movement.
- Thermal checking to be done at the entrance point and fresh masks and gloves to be used by the exam functionaries once the staff verification has been completed.
- The seating area should be sanitised properly after every session. Even washrooms should be kept clean and disinfected.
- The exam hall should be sprayed with disinfectant including the walls, gates, doors, floors etc. Sanitisers along with liquid handwash should be kept at the entry gate, exam room, staff/ observer room etc.
- Dustbins should be clean and properly covered.
- The staff will have to fill a self-declaration form with regards to their health status before entering the exam area. If someone is unable to meet the self-declaration criteria or thermo gun check, he/ she will be asked to leave the exam centre there and then.
State Wise Guidelines for Final-Year Exams 2020
UGC’s revised guidelines will impact the exam schedules across the country, especially in Gujarat and Karnataka as they were waiting for the UGC's take on the issue. But it's not clear if Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Odisha and Madhya Pradesh will revisit their decision to cancel all the exams in higher education. The information will be updated here as soon as more information is available.
Meanwhile, you can click on the links below to check the state-wise guidelines for final-year exams 2020 -
|Andhra Pradesh Final-Year Semester Exams Guidelines||Telangana Final-Year Exam Guidelines|
|Maharashtra - Final-Year Exam Guidelines||Odisha UG/ PG Final Exams Decision|
|Rajasthan Final-Year UG/ PG Exams||-|
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