Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal announced that the universities will be conducting only the final year examination this year. First and second year students will be promoted will not be sitting for an exam but will be promoted based on internal assessments, reports Times of India.

The minister conveyed the decision to heads of more than 45,000 higher educational institutes during a live webinar on Thursday. The report said that the heads of institutions welcomed the decision.

Regarding the assessment for 1st and 2nd year students, 50% of weightage will be given to previous exams and 50% of weightage will be given to internal assessment of the current semester, adds the TOI report.

For students who are in the first semester, 50% assessment will be done based on the previous academic record. As per the UGC guidelines, final year exam is scheduled to be conducted in July.

The HRD minister said that the final year exam is slated to be conducted in July. However, if the COVID-19 does not improve before that, new dates for the exams will be announced.

Earlier, UGC had formed two panels to chalk out future plans for universities and colleges amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown. A seven-member panel headed by Haryana Central University vice-chancellor RC Kuhad recommended that the new academic calendar can be initiated in the month of September. The panel also proposed that all the exams which have been delayed should be held in the month of July.

The second panel headed by Professor Nageshwar Rao, Vice-Chancellor, IGNOU was asked to look into how colleges and universities can conduct and promote online classes and issues surrounding it. The report for the same has also been submitted.

Based on the recommendations, UGC has recommended that the admission process for the 1st year students begin from August 1st and the process should be completed before August 31st. The academic process for new students can begin from September 1st. For old students, the studies are suggested to begin from August 1st itself.

The Commission also recommended colleges to conduct the annual/semester exams in the month of July and the result be declared by July 31st, 2020. To expedite the process, the commission has recommended to use a simplified way of conducting the exam like shortening the exam duration and flexibility of both online and offline examination.