Cotton University successfully conducts final-year undergraduate examination

GUWAHATI: Cotton University (CU) has successfully conducted the final-year undergraduate open book examination in an online mode, even as the educational institution campuses remain closed for students in Assam.

The undergraduate final-year examinations commenced in CU from August 18 in an online mode.

By doing so, the leading state university has become one of the very few institutions in the northeastern region to conduct the sixth-semester examinations of the undergraduate courses, as mandated by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

In its July 6 guideline, the UGC mandated conduction of the final year examination of undergraduate and postgraduate examinations across universities before September 30, 2020.

“The question papers were uploaded in the students’ portal of the university website at the scheduled start time of examination. Students were required to log into their respective accounts in the student portal using their enrolment numbers and passwords to download the question papers,” said a university spokesman.

He said a total of three hours – two hours for writing and one hour for IT-related work – was allotted for submission of the scanned copies of answer scripts in the link provided in the portal.

To ensure flexibility of submission, answer scripts were also accepted through official departmental email ids.

“The students are required to preserve the answer scripts along with an undertaking and declaration in a sealed envelope which is to be submitted to the varsity once it reopens for students,” the spokesman added.

CU controller of examinations (i/c) Prof. Dipak Sarma and his team, along with technical support from the Computer Centre of the varsity, made the successful conduction of the online final-year undergraduate examination possible despite all the adversities at the time of the pandemic.

“We have been successful in conducting the undergraduate final-year examination without any hiccups. The postgraduate final-year examination will also be conducted in similar lines from mid-September onwards. It will be concluded by September 30, as mandated by the UGC,” said Prof. Sarma.

States stood divided over the UGC guidelines, mandating the conduct of final year examination when the educational institutions remain closed across the country due to the persisting Covid-19 threat.

Student bodies and a number of states also filed petitions with the plea to cancel examinations in view of the pandemic. Many of the stakeholders were for awarding of degrees based on the marks obtained by students in internal assessments.

The Supreme Court, on August 28, however, upheld the UGC’s directive issued to universities to conduct the final-year undergraduate and postgraduate exams by September 30.

But the apex court had ruled that the states are empowered under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 to seek postponement of the exams in consultation with the UGC in view of the pandemic.

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