EDITORâ€”The Law development Centre (LDC) recently cancelled an examination because the supervisors believed that it had leaked. The head of commercial law department, Augustine Twesigye, is quoted to have said that the students had tipped off the LDC management that they had revised the paper throughout the weekend!
Reports of examination malpractices in Uganda are not new. This is not only embarrassing but also reflects very poorly on the countryâ€™s intellectual image. Every effort must be made to stamp out this vice from our educational institutions.
Leakages at the LDC and many other institutions in the country may partly be due to the poor examination handling process and lack of appropriate computer skills by lecturers. These factors can also be blamed on limited funding and failure to upgrade institutions to match changing technological developments.
Examination leakages occur during the process of typing, photocopying, storage, and transportation to examination rooms. Examination grades can also be altered when many people handle examination result sheets.
The process involves third parties, including lecturers, who can blame each other for the leakages. It is therefore essential that examinations are handled very carefully to plug the loopholes.
With recent advancement in computer science and technology, lecturers should be required or facilitated to gain skills to type, print and or photocopy examination papers for the courses they teach.
This will reduce the number of participants involved in the examination process and hence the likely leakages.
The lecturers should be able to grade the examination papers and upload marks (grades) in a secured central database that can be accessed by both the academic transcript office and the student once the grading is over.
However, this process requires investment in computer skills training and changes in examination handling rules in institutions of higher learning.
With the elimination of third parties, it would be easy to zero in the culprits responsible for examination malpractices.
Computer skills can curb exam cheating