Clearing exams as easy as playing mobile games | Nagpur News

A key item on this diarist’s bucket list is getting admission into a postgraduate course. Despite having a Master’s in mass communication, getting an MSc or law degree remains an unfulfilled dream. Hope has been rekindled with the advent of mobile phone examinations.
Attempted in the comfort of home, mobile exams have brought a revolution of sorts in Maharashtra’s results. In the 2020 summer exams held by Nagpur University (NU), an unbelievable 99% students cleared the papers. Never in the university’s history had its results crossed 50% before.
This happened due to the ease of solving exams on mobile phones in the absence of monitoring. This diarist wrote a series of articles on students getting promoted to the next class without a test of their ability. Having covered education for one-and-a-half decades, never have the government and universities gone out of their way to pass students.
It was difficult to hold offline exams due to Covid, but there are other ways to conduct them. Exams like JEE and NEET were held around the same time in online format at exam centres. If these can be held without compromising on quality, why is the government spoiling this generation?
Top academics expressed their disappointment over the method. NU office-bearers too endorsed the stand, but expressed inability to do anything as they were directed by the government.
Most students are happy with mobile exams as they are passing effortlessly. If an exam’s practical component bears 20 marks, someone scoring 14 there will clear the paper. Even a zero in theory will not matter.
In objective-type questions, blindly clicking on the same option in all 40/50 questions yields at least four-five correct answers. This diarist has reported that students who had been failing for a decade cleared their exams in the last two years. NU passed the responsibility of conducting failure students’ papers to colleges, who used the ‘golden opportunity’ to clear backlogs of their students. NU officials were also elated as they did not have to set papers for repeaters.
In the summer 2020 exams, final year students needed a 25/50 score to pass. There was no negative marking and hardly any monitoring as many students sat together to solve the paper. NU tightened the passing criteria slightly after some news reports, but it failed to make a big difference.
The winter 2021 exams are being held in the same way, despite the easing of Covid conditions. NU should have been able to conduct its exams on the lines of JEE and NEET, by using college computers to maintain quality.
There were calls from readers and friends from the city and other places, asking how did NU pass all the students. Many asked whether they could resume their education, which they had left midway.
This is the reason for the diarist’s wishing to have secured admission last year and adding a fourth degree to one’s qualifications. By this time the third semester would have been cleared, and passing the fourth semester would have been guaranteed due to online mobile exams, which arguably are NU’s biggest failed experiment.
(If university students want to be heard, Vaibhav Ganjapure is all ears)

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