University of Nairobi conducts first-ever end of semester exams online

University of Nairobi conducts first-ever end of semester exams online

The University of Nairobi on Tuesday conducted its first ever end of semester examinations online owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to the university management, more than 20 students taking Master of Arts in Environmental Law and Master of Arts in Environmental Policy sat their examinations from the comfort of their homes.

“We used Google platforms to administer our exams-first we invited our students to Google Classroom so that we are able to see all of them and then we used Google Meet to monitor or invigilate the process,” said Dr. Collins Odote, the Director, Centre for Advanced studies in Environmental Law and Policy (CASELAP).

Dr. Odote noted that the successful online examinations process followed intense weeks of teaching and learning also conducted virtually via Google Suite, Zoom and Webex among other eLearning platforms.

UoN Vice Chancellor Prof. Stephen Kiama said that over 5500 virtual classes had already taken place and were still going on.

He maintained that the mechanisms had been put in place to ensure the quality of the online exams is not compromised in anyway.

“As a World Class university all our examination guidelines and procedures have been benchmarked against the global best practice and we shall continue to ensure that they are reliable, consistent and of integrity,” said Prof. Kiama, in his address to staff and students on May 8, 2020.

The university has negotiated deals with network provider Telkom to provide free data bundles for faculty and students to facilitate online learning. For students with poor internet connection, the UoN continues to provide them with playback lecture videos and course-ware packages.

The Vice Chancellor has acknowledged that students with special needs and other disadvantaged groups may face difficulties in undertaking online exams but says their issues shall be addressed individually as they arise.

Various learning institutions are relying on online platforms to provide students with options to complete their studies at a time when face-to-face exams are impossible to be held due to restrictions imposed in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.