KAMPALA, UGANDA: Makerere University has announced new dates for the end-of-semester examination dates to enable students to adapt to the proposed modes of assessment after canceling the online examinations that had earlier been proposed.
In a University communique dated August 26 signed by Prof Umar Kakumba, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor in charge of Academics announced that the Semester One 2021/22 examinations that were supposed to start on September 6 have been pushed a week further to September 13.
Prof Kakumba 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.”
He added; “Sensitisation of students on selected alternative modes of assessment should continue for the next two wee. (In any case not later than 10. September 2021). This will ensure effective implementation of the examination/ assessment process.”
The announcement comes barely a week after the Makerere University Senate together with the college academic committee boards resolved to use different modalities of assessment for the end of semester exams. These among other modalities proposed include take-home assignments, field assessments, and presentations among others that the colleges can consider.
Students through their Guild leadership raised complaints concerning the inefficiency of the university online platform MUELE, data costs and lack of computers to support online examinations tasked the University Council to address issues with the online platform before assessment.
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.