New academic session of varsities from Sept: UGC

New academic session of universities from September: UGC

The guidelines were issued by HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank in the presence of Higher Education Secretary Amit Khare

Representative image (iStock Photo)

The new academic session of universities across the country will start in September, a delay of two months due to the lockdown, the University Grants Commission guidelines on Examinations and Academic Calender said on Wednesday.

The guidelines were issued by HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank in the presence of Higher Education Secretary Amit Khare.

According to the guidelines issued by the Commission, intermediate semester students will be graded based on internal assessment of the present and the previous semester.

In states where the COVID-19 situation has normalised, there will be exams in the month of July, the guidelines said. For the terminal semester, the examinations will be held in July.

The Commission said the universities may adopt alternative and simplified modes and methods of examinations to complete the process in shorter period of time.

It also said the universities may adopt efficient and innovative modes of examinations by reducing the time from 3 hours to 2 hours.

“Universities may conduct Terminal / Intermediate Semester / Year examinations in offline / online mode, as per their Ordinances/Rules and Regulations, Scheme of Examinations, observing the guidelines of "social distancing" and keeping in view the support system available with them and ensuring fair opportunity to all students,” it added.

A HRD Ministry statement said the UGC guidelines were advisory in nature and the university may chart out its own plan taking into account the issues pertaining to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The UGC had constituted a special committee for when and how to start a new session in universities. This seven-member committee constituted by the UGC had submitted its report on exam-related issues and academic calendar last week.

The Commission recommended a six month extension for M.Phil and PhD students and suggested use of video conferencing using mutually convenient technologies for conduct of viva-voce and practical examinations.

“While the new academic session for first-year students starts from September 1, for second- and third-year students this academic session can be started from August 1,” it said.