Convert crisis into opportunity during lockdown: Odisha minister to students

Bhubaneswar: In time of COVID-19 pandemic, Odisha Higher Education Minister Arun Sahoo asked the students to convert the crisis into opportunity during lockdown.

He urged students to focus on studies and get prepared for semester tests as the postponed examinations will be conducted at any time after June 17.

Speaking about guidelines issued by the University Grants Commission (UGC) for examinations and academic calendar for the universities in view of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown, the minister said that the Higher Education Department of Odisha Government will review it.

“The Department will review the UGC guidelines and will take further call accordingly in context of Odisha. A high-level meeting in this regard will be held following which we will share information in details,” Sahoo said.

The UGC on Wednesday had told the universities that the new academic session for freshers may begin in universities from September and for already enrolled students in August in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country and the examinations for final semester students will be conducted in July.

“Intermediate students will be graded based on internal assessment of the present and previous semester. In states where the COVID-19 situation has normalised, there will be exams in the month of July. For terminal semester students, exams will be held in July,” the UGC said.

“Universities may follow a six-day week pattern and devise proforma to record travel or stay history of staff and students for the lockdown period. Extension of six months will be granted to MPhil, PhD students and viva-voice be conducted through video conference,” it added.

The commission clarified that the guidelines are advisory in nature and varsities may chalk out their own plan taking into consideration issues pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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