Changwon National University is conducting classes through remote lectures. Due to COVID-19, there have been many changes as remote lectures have progressed over the past 10 weeks. The first semester has been held through remote lectures and replacement assignments. The eighth week of the semester is typically the mid-term exam period. The mid-term exam methods also changed to coincide with the class changes. What has changed for the mid-term exams, and what has the student response been?
Firstly, in the case of the departments of business, humanities, and social science, there were many classes that gave assignments instead of mid-term, or skipped the mid-term exams completely. Naturally, there are many subjects that give scores on the assignment. However, in this semester, the assignments replaced by the mid-term exams. The response from liberal arts students was generally positive. If the semester had proceeded normally, the students would have done both assignment and taken a mid-term exam. However, those were combined so the student workload was reduced. Therefore, many students expressed their opinions that their work pressure and stress had been reduced for the test. The tests for liberal arts classes require a lot of memorization, so students currently feel less stressed.
On the contrary, there are students with negative opinions about replacing mid-term exams with assignments. Replacing a test with assignment may not accurately assess comprehension of the course topics. The lazy students who don't study hard can still get good grades if they just submit assignments well. Also, the information for assignments provided by remote classes is limited. There is the possibility that students may submit the assignments that don’t accurately follow the professor's guidelines. With this in mind, replacing mid-term exams with assignment may cause problems with fair grades because students are not taking the tests.
Secondly, in the case of the natural sciences and engineering colleges, there were many subjects that that have not announced anything regarding or skipped mid-term exams. The classes of natural sciences and engineering that skipped mid-terms significantly changed the weight of certain grades in the course. In the current plan for remote classes, final exams will be conducted offline with face-to-face tests. Therefore, many professors in natural sciences and engineering intend to increase the weight of the grades for the face-to-face exams and omit the grades from mid-term exams.
There were also classes which held their mid-term exams online. Online tests always have the risk of student cheating. In order to prevent cheating, professors ordered students to turn on video cameras while they took tests. Natural sciences and engineering students mainly reacted negatively to changes in mid-term exams. Many engineering and natural sciences students said that they felt that their tuition was wasted. Also, students said that the work load is higher because the mid-term exam’s grade was omitted, and the final exam's grade weight has increased. Most of the final exams’ grades are now weighted at 50 to 60 percent. It is no exaggeration to say that one final exam will determine the results of this semester. Therefore, the burden on students has inevitably increased.
Until now, the semester’s classes have been replaced by online classes due to COVID-19. The professors were confused as to what to do as well. Originally, mid-term exams were at the discretion of the professors and the university did not tell the professors how to conduct them. So, students and professors were both very confused about the mid-term exams. Fortunately, final exams are officially going to face-to-face tests. Good job to all of the students who took mid-term exams. Let's keep up the good work to finish the semester!
|▲Educational challenges amidst world pandemic concern students|
By Seo Seong-il, reporter email@example.com
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