JNU may cancel summer vacations, hold online exams

Updated: April 14, 2020 5:57:36 pm

The report said, “The university is most likely to remain closed during the current semester and hence all efforts have to be made to conduct examinations in the online mode.”

The Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) is contemplating whether to conduct examinations online in order to complete the academic calendar on time, a report by the administration said. The report added that the varsity might cancel summer vacations as well.

The Vice-Chancellor had earlier set up two committees – one to overlook pending courses and another to schedule examinations – during the lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.  A final decision would be taken after recommendations from faculty members is received on April 16, the Registrar said Tuesday.

The report said, “The university is most likely to remain closed during the current semester and hence all efforts have to be made to conduct examinations in the online mode.”

“Students who would not be able to give examinations for lack of internet connectivity should be allowed to submit their assignments with a grace period. However, students, who did not have internet connectivity due to the lockdown period, will be permitted to write the online examinations after they return to the campus post-lockdown. This will make the examination pattern uniform, i.e., online mode of examinations for all students for the Winter Semester,” the report said.

“Hand written copies of assignments should be scanned and sent through email by students who are unable to type their answers on the computer screens. Evaluation of all examination papers should be completed as per the academic calendar of the university,” it added.

With regard to submission date of M Phil and PhD thesis, the report said this may be extended as per the UGC Guidelines and that “relaxation of publication requirement for thesis submission may be given as per the UGC Guidelines.”

The report also said the “university should cancel the summer vacation in 2020 and the Executive Council may be requested to approve it”, and that the viva for qualified students in JNUEE (JNU entrance examinations) for admission into M. Phil and PhD programmes should be conducted through videoconferencing mode.”

On Tuesday, Registrar Pramod Kumar said Deans of School and Chairpersons of Special Centres “will consult their respective faculties and prepare a set of recommendations relevant to the respective Schools/Special centres on the comprehensive mechanism that would be followed to complete the courses, hold examinations, and facilitate dissertations/theses guidance and submissions.”

“(They) have been requested to submit their recommendations by April 16 after wider consultations with various centres and faculty members. After approval of the Competent Authority, the final decisions on method of completing courses and conducting examinations and other related issues would be reported to the Academic Council,” said Kumar.

The JNU Teachers’ Association (JNUTA) has said the report by the administration was a “mere eyewash” and prepared with the agenda of “pushing through the pre-determined agenda of online teaching and evaluation as a substitute for the regular mode.”

“It in fact doesn’t offer an academically and practically viable option at all… No matter what the compulsions, teachers cannot accept a purely formal completion of the semester that reduces it to a farce. Teachers also stand ready to make the extra effort needed to ensure proper completion of the academic requirements prescribed,” the JNUTA said.

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