Less than two weeks before the much-discussed online exam for the Summer 2020 batch begins, students are grappling with a new problem. Two circulars published by the University of Mumbai in the past ten days mentioned the need for a comprehensive bank of multiple choice questions (MCQs) for each group of colleges, but made no mention of whether this bank of questions had to be shared with students who have left university many confused and anxious.
“The Minister of State for Higher Education and Technical Education previously assured us that a question bank will be created for each subject and shared with the students, as MCQ-format papers are a new concept. But now the colleges no longer share anything and instead insist on only taking mock exams, ”said Siddharth Ingle, President of the Maharashtra Students Union (MASU).
Currently, colleges have already started putting together an exam schedule and running mock exams for their students to understand the new concept.
“The university’s circular mentions the need for a comprehensive MCQ bank, but nowhere does it mention the need for colleges to share it with students. Mock tests are mandatory and we are working on them, ”said the director of a prominent suburban college. He added that the students have been requesting a questionnaire for a week and that they have all received the university circular for clarification.
Most universities have already started to prepare questionnaires for both the practical test and the final exams.
“Since the concept is new, the university and the State Department of Education insisted on a student field test to help students understand the concept. Colleges were not asked to share question banks with students, ”said Sobhana Vasudevan, director of RA Podar College Matunga.
“Colleges are not allowed to share questions with students. To help them get started with the new exam format, the circular clarifies that random or mock tests are key for all colleges,” said Anju Kapoor, director of Usha Pravin Gandhi College, Vile Parle. She added that all college professors are already working to get students to show up for a mock test before the final exams begin on October 1.
While MU examiner Vinod Patil could not be reached for official comment, a senior examining officer has confirmed that colleges do not have to share questions with students.
According to the MU schedule, repeater candidates’ practical exams start on September 15, while their theory test starts on September 25th. The exams for new candidates will take place between October 1st and 15th, 2020.