University of Calcutta VC to meet principals online on exam modalities –

Kolkata News

It has been decided in principle that final year/terminal semester exams will be conducted online between Oct. 1 and 18 and results declared by Oct. 31

Kolkata will go on the exam mode this week after a meeting of the Vice Chancellor of University of Calcutta with the principals of all affiliated colleges.

The meeting will be held on Wednesday afternoon on Google Meet. Even though it has been decided in principle that the final year/terminal semester exams will be conducted online between October 1 and 18 and the results declared by October 31, the meeting will set the ball rolling. The university, as of now, proposes to email the questions and give 24 hours to the students to submit their answer-sheets for each subject.

There are over 30 universities in West Bengal, with nearly 700 colleges under them, and even though each one is free to conduct exams the way they want, as long as they follow the UGC directive — upheld by the Supreme Court — that students cannot be promoted without holding of exams, the exact method adopted by Calcutta University is likely to give clues to many others. This would be the first online meeting to be held between the Vice Chancellor and the principals.

Opposition to conventional exams

West Bengal was among the States that had strongly opposed the holding of conventional exams in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. It had advised the universities to devise an alternative method of evaluation. Most of the institutions were in the process of compiling mark-sheets, on the basis of the alternative method, when the UGC directive came in early July that results cannot be declared without holding exams. Once the matter went to the Supreme Court — the UGC directive being challenged by a group of students — the universities across the State had more or less come to terms with the fact that they might have to eventually conduct exams.

Only the Kolkata-based Rabindra Bharati University is yet to take a decision — citing its inability to complete the syllabus due to the pandemic — and prefers to hold the exams after Durga Puja, which begins on October 22.

And the Santiniketan-based Visva-Bharati, the only Central University in the whole of West Bengal, has left it to the principals of its various institutions to conduct the exams the way they wanted to as long as the adhered to the UGC norms.

“The principals will consult the HoDs and faculty members to devise whatever system of evaluation they deem appropriate in such extraordinary circumstances,” Visva-Bharati said in a circular, adding that it will “leave no stone unturned to complete the terminal examination by September 30”.