Qatar University (QU) announced new measures related to the evaluation process for students in the current Spring 2020 semester after the transition to distance learning system in the context of precautionary measures to prevent coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
Qatar University President Dr Hassan bin Rashid al-Derham said in a message to the students, that Qatar University has decided to continue teaching through the distance learning process for the remainder of the current semester (Spring 2020).
QU president added that over the past few days, the university has deliberated on the methods of evaluating students. All colleges of Qatar University and the student affairs departments had participated in this conversation and provided valuable insight. During these discussion meetings we have examined a variety of evaluation examples applied by regional and international universities.
In addition, the university had taken into consideration many important factors such as ensuring the quality and seriousness of the educational process and the need to reduce anxiety and stress on both the students and the faculty members.
Another important factor is to guarantee that the students will not be negatively affected by this shift and to provide them with appropriate compensation and evaluation adjustment opportunities. In alignment with this, the University has decided to maintain the scale of final estimates currently in use (the letter system A, B +, B, etc.) while implementing new procedures that will help to reduce anxiety and will give students an opportunity to maintain their academic performance.
He expressed confidence that the university had chosen the optimal evaluation method to adapt and the additional procedures outlined above will guarantee that students will not be negatively affected by this sudden transition of the learning process. It will also provide opportunities of compensation in order to protect the student's overall academic performance.
"I am also confident that this choice will motivate students to work even harder and will support them to finish the academic semester and get the highest of grades," he added.
In this context, QU has provided a document that contains a set of questions and answers that can provide additional explanation of the outlined new procedure, he said adding that this file will also be published on the university's website.
"It is important to understand that we are currently living through exceptional circumstances that enforced a semester upon us that differs from any previous semesters because in exceptional circumstances, exceptional procedures are required. Therefore, patience, flexibility and mutual understanding should be practised by all members of QU community. This is why I would like to take this opportunity to call upon all students and faculty members to do their best and work together to achieve optimal benefit considering what is available. We shall aspire to support the students to gain the required skills and information in order to achieve the expected outputs of the educational process that will qualify them to serve their communities and nations," Dr al-Derham said.
"In the end, I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to my fellow faculty members and researchers, who have positively responded to this transition and showed their high sense of responsibility. I would also like to thank the university employees who spared no effort and worked tirelessly day and night to move the university through this transition and implement the new learning system in record time," he said.
Addressing students he said: "To you, my dear students, I would like to share my gratitude and appreciation for your understanding, co-operation and your continuous hard work. My gratitude as well is extended to your families for their understanding, co-operation, and support for students and the university's efforts. I am confident that the university, with the co-operation and solidarity of all of us, will emerge from this phase stronger".