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UGC final year exam 2020 will be held by September, says HRD ministry. Read the new guidelines

In the wake of coronavirus pandemic, the union ministry of human resource and development said the final year examinations in the universities will be held in September. “The terminal semester will be conducted by the universities by the end of September, 2020 in offline (pen and paper) or online or blended (online + offline) mode,” the University Grants Commission (UGC) announced today.

The decision came after Union ministry of home affairs said it has sent a letter to the Union higher education Secretary permitting universities and institutions to conduct examinations.

The home ministry said the end-of-term examinations are compulsory according to UGC guidelines. “The final Term Examinations are to be compulsorily conducted as per the UGC Guidelines on Examinations and Academic Calendar for the Universities; and as per the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) approved by the Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare,” the letter mentioned.

India has shut educational institutions in the last week of March to curb the coronavirus spread in the country. Various examinations conducted by universities and higher education institutions have been suspended since then.

The apex education regulator today announced the ‘UGC Revised Guidelines on Examinations and Academic Calender for the Universities in view of COVID-19 Pandemic’. “In the view of the emerging situation related to COVID-18 pandemic in India, it is important to safeguard the principles of health, safety, fair and equal opportunity for students,” it mentioned.

Those students who have backlog should compulsory be evaluated by offline or online examinations as per ‘feasibility and suitability’. If a final year student is unable to appear in the examination, the university must arrange special examination for the student, the regulator said. The above provision shall be applicable only for the current academic session 2019-20 as a one-time measure, UGC underlined.

“In case a student of terminal semester/final year is unable to appear in the examination conducted by the university for whatsoever the reason(s) may be, he or she may be given opportunity to appear in special examinations…which may be conducted by the university as and when feasible, so that the student is not put to any inconvenience or disadvantage,” it said.

Earlier, there were reports that UGC may cancel the final year examinations amid COVID-19 outbreak in the country. Today’s announcement brought some clarity to students.

In view of the surge in COVID-19 infections, the UGC’s panel of experts, headed by Haryana University vice-chancellor R C Kuhad, was on June 25 asked to review the final-year examination guidelines issued on April 29. The examinations were scheduled to be held in July.

The HRD ministry earlier postponed the JEE and NEET 2020 examinations amid COVID-19 outbreak. “Keeping in mind the safety of students and to ensure quality education, we have decided to postpone JEE and NEET examinations,” Pokhriyal said.

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