Vice Chancellor of National Law School of India University, Bangalore, Prof. (Dr.) Sudhir Krishnaswamy on Tuesday conducted a Live-YouTube Session to address various concerns and queries surrounding the CLAT 2020.
The national level UG/PG law-entrance examination is scheduled to be conducted on August 22, through a "computer-based, online, centre-based" test.
The decision was taken keeping in view of the difficulty involved in conducting the exam offline, or conducting home proctored tests.
"We have actually elaborately tested and evaluated the option of conducting exams home proctored and let me just say that despite engaging carefully with the technology and test in this excusable scale we found that the range of constraints that we have with respect to bandwidth and connectivity will mean that we cannot assure a quality exam of high integrity. Hence we have to do it at centers.
Why would a center exam not be offline because the offline exam requires the printing of question papers its transport from very through various parts of the country in that situation and the handling of paper in an exam center," Prof. said.
Through his live session, Prof. Krishnaswamy has addressed the concerns of all the aspirants on the issue of format of the exam and the user-interface.
"There are several concerns about the format of the exam now in the circumstances we have had to shift from a pen and paper exam that lat is conventionally painful for most years to and computer-based tests. We have done the computer-based tests process very carefully; we are paying attention to fonts, interface and to the manner in which the test will be delivered, to ensure that the testing experience is student-friendly and is accessible to all of you," he said.
The CLAT Consortium had earlier announced that it will conduct mock examinations to ensure that all candidates are familiarized with the exam-interface. Clearing air on the same, Prof. Krishnaswamy said,
"We will give you access to mock examples. These will be exams enabled on to your login and it will use the exact same interface that you will use in the exam; it will also be tailored to the format of the exam. I would encourage every single one of you two to take this opportunity to familiarize yourself with that with the testing protocols the interface and get used to how you might work with the range of questions that we use."
"Many students already have some experience in working with electronic interfaces through phones or through computers and this is the interface that we will develop and deliver for the CLAT exam will be highly user friendly used in several national exams."
There will be two mock tests for the UG program and one mock test for the PG program. Candidates may take the mock exam from their home computers using their personal internet. Prof. Krishnaswamy has however assured that the on the day of the actual exam, internet quality, computer systems, or any other factor relating to the examination will be standardized to impart a uniform experience to all candidates.
Access To Exam Centers
Prof. Krishnaswamy has assured all the aspirants that proper travel permits will be taken to ensure that candidates have easy access to their centers.
"Over and above format we are also going to go into a whole host of other arrangements both on the at the exam centers as well as facilitating access to exam centers that we will roll out in the days to come," he said.
He disclosed that as of now, 200 centers have been finalized and that the Consortium is continuously exploring how it might expand the number of centers to minimize the travel. So far as candidates travelling from Containment Zones are concerned he said,
"We will respond very specifically to candidates who have similar concerns and difficulties about traveling from containment zone we will work with the states and with the local authorities to ensure that travel is made possible."
Prof. Krishnaswamy has assured that the health and safety protocols that will be followed at the test centers will be of the "highest standard". He informed that the Consortium has classified all centers into "general testing rooms" and "isolation rooms".
Candidates who are asymptomatic- will sit in a physically distanced setting called the general testing rooms, following medical protocol arrangement.
Candidates who are symptomatic or are suspected of having these concerns- will be placed in an isolation room in the same Center and will follow a different protocol.
So far as carrying of items such as masks, water bottles, calculators, rough sheets, etc. is concerned, Prof. said the same will be communicated to the candidates closer to the date of the exam so that there remains absolute clarity about what one can bring in.
Two main grievances relating to the examination pattern of CLAT 2020, Prof. said, relate to the kind of questions that may be asked in the general knowledge paper, and the case laws that are relevant for preparation for the PG examination.
"The CLAT pattern has always emphasized that current affairs and general knowledge is right up to the date of the exam and this year will be no different. We will stick to the format that we have developed over the years and deliver on that," he said.
For the PG course he said,
"You can expect that the cases and materials that we will discuss will be among the most important cases and materials in the various subject matters that we are testing you on. So I hope that clarifies that we will not be trying to discover and asking you questions about arcane areas of law. We will be asking you about the central questions in the areas of law in which you will be tested."
Declaration of Results and Admission Schedule
Prof. Krishnaswamy said that CLAT 2020 is the biggest CLAT that the Consortium has organized across time. He expressed hope that declaration of results and the counseling process will conclude within a fortnight of the conduct of the exam. A detailed calendar for the same will be made available closer to the exam date.
So far as admissions are concerned he clarified that different NLUs will develop different approaches on how they will take admission of candidates in the absence of class 12 marks. Further, college commencement and College annual calendar will also be decided by the respective NLUs themselves.
While Prof. assured that the given examination date will "hold ground", he added,
"There is nothing that we in the consortium can do or for that matter anyone else can do to predetermine what might be the ground conditions closer to the date of the exam. What I can reassure you is that we are paying close attention to it we are taking the best advice and counsel that we can get we are gathering all the information necessary across the country both ourselves through our vendors and various government agencies."