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Makerere University extends examination dates

Makerere final year students do their exams yesterday. PHOTO URN/FILE

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Makerere University Council has extended examination dates to enable students understand the different modes of assessment. The exams that were supposed to start on September 6 have been pushed to September 13.

Two weeks ago, Makerere University Senate left individual college academic committee boards to decide how to conduct end of semester examinations. There are different modalities of assessment including take-home assignments, field assessments and presentations among others that the colleges can consider.

In a letter dated August 27, and addressed to the College academic committees, Professor Umar Kakumba, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academics noted that the examination dates have been extended to enable more preparation of students on selected assessment models.

“The examination assessment period has been extended from 13 September and concluded on 30th September 2021 to enable more preparation and sensitization of students as requested. Please organize accordingly.”

Students raised complaints concerning the inefficiency of the university online platform MUELE, data costs and lack of computers to support online examinations. Through the Guild President Ivan Ssempijja, they tasked the University Council to address issues with the online platform before assessment.

Ssempijja, in a meeting with the University Council, demanded that the scheduled dates are revised to give adequate time for sensitizing the students on the different forms of assessment.

As part of the preparation for the exams, the University conducted training for lecturers on Open Distance and Electronic Learning together and online assessment of students. A section of students from different colleges were selected for the training.

Unlike finalists at the University, continuing students were to start their physical end of semester exams the same day the government enforced the 42 days lockdown. Since then, on June 7th 2021, schools and higher institutions of learning have remained closed.

An online survey by the University Guild indicated that 50 percent of the students prefer physical exams. Only 13 percent of the 3,884 respondents selected online examinations while 37% supported take-home assessments.

Those opposed to online exams cited the lack of smartphones and laptops, cost of data and poor internet connectivity as some of the major obstacles.

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URN

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