28 June 2011

Namibia: Exam Chaos At International University

CHAOS was the order of the day at the International University of Management's (IUM) campus in Bahnhof Street, Windhoek, yesterday as hordes of students had not received their examination results seven days after the second semester was due to start.

IUM students were up in arms as their supplementary exams started yesterday, but many of them had received incorrect results and others had received no results at all. Students at the IUM campus said the results were due to be posted last Friday, but those posted online and at the campus were wrong.

As a result, many of the students did not know whether they had to write supplementary exams or not.

"How can we go and write supplementary exams if we don't even know what our results were?" one student asked.

Another student indicated that there had been logistical problems with their June examinations as in some instances exam venues were not adequate for the number of students registered for the exam. In other instances students were handed incorrect question papers.

The Namibian was further told that classes for the second semester were due to start on June 20, but by Monday classes had not resumed. Furthermore, students said that no one from IUM had explained the situation regarding their results to them.

"When we try and speak to someone, their doors are just closed all the time, and when there is someone, we are sent to another building," said a student who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Other students complained of administrative problems, saying that many of them had not received their cumulative assessment marks prior to the exams.

When questioned for comment, IUM Registrar Elizabeth Beukes said she was not in a position to speak about the matter, but was also unclear as to who could be reached, as Virginia Namwandi, IUM Vice Chancellor, and other senior management were all at the national conference on education.

Beukes also said that she was unsure whether the Vice Chancellor was aware of the situation at the campus on Monday.

IUM Deputy Vice Chancellor Earl Taylor said the correct results had been posted online, but the students did not read the spreadsheet properly. Taylor said there was a lengthy turnaround period from when exams are concluded to when the results were released due to external moderation of all exam scripts.

Taylor blamed administrative problems on the fact that the IUM is relatively young, and also because they are in a "transitional" phase as they are relocating from the Bahnhof Street campus to a new campus next to the Western Bypass.

Taylor said the "minor issue" had been sorted out by Monday afternoon, and that the students would now be writing their supplementary exams in November this year.

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