The Delhi High Court has asked the University Grants Commission (UGC) to clarify if the examinations for the final year students can be Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs), presentation or assignment based instead of typical long format papers.
A single judge bench of the high court presided by Justice Prathiba M Singh while listing the matter for further hearing on Friday post lunch asked the UGC to consider and state whether the options of MCQ, assignments, presentation etc are available to final year students.
The court observed that unlike other universities across the globe, the Delhi University has not been helping its students.
The court was hearing petitions challenging Delhi University’s decision to hold Open Book Examination (OBE) for final year undergraduate courses which will be in long form exams.
During the course of the hearing, the UGC appraised the court that guidelines do not permit internal assessment for evaluating final year students as it puts the credibility of the system at risk. “Graduating people on the basis of their past performance is not an option,” the counsel for the UGC said.
The UGC said that if students take assignments home, the sanctity of exams would not be maintained as there would be a chance of cheating.
To which the court responded, “At the end of the day, percentage of people who would cheat would be minimal. People, who would cheat, can do so even in hard exams. Three hours is not.. Open Book Exam (OBE) has so many problems.”
Last week, Delhi University agreed before a separate bench of the Delhi High Court to conduct the final year examinations through the Online Open Book Examination (OBE) mode from August 10.
The advancement of dates came after a division bench of the high court presided by Justices Hima Kohli and Subromonium Prasad asked the varsity to expedite the examination process.
“Wrap it up fast, the more you delay the exams, the lesser career options would be there with the students,” the bench said.
It has also asked the varsity to file an affidavit mentioning the detailed timeline for the declaration of results and conducting physical examination for those students who could not appear in open book examination.
The court’s request and direction came after the varsity in an affidavit filed on Monday had submitted that the open book examinations will be conducted from August 17 to September 8.
Initially, the varsity had announced that the online Open Book Examination (OBE) would commence from July 1, which was later postponed by the varsity to July 10. The university has now postponed the same till August 15 without giving a specific date when they would take place.