Does the MCQ Format Work For Social Sciences and Humanities Entrance Examinations?

This article outlines the problems with online entrance examinations in multiple choice format for the social sciences and humanities, drawing on the experience of Jawaharlal Nehru University. The objections are both academic and logistical, but there are also concerns about security, the possibility of manipulation of results, and the enormous financial cost involved. The commitment to social justice is also deeply compromised by the shift to online entrance exams.

The announcement of computerised online entrance examinations for Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), in the form of multiple choice questions (MCQ), appears, on the face of it, to be merely yet another bureaucratic, ill-thought-out, and hasty change in higher education policy (Bhanj 2018). But, it is not only because JNU has an all-India entrance examination that we need to pay heed to the processes at work. We need to be alert to what is going on because there are two kinds of larger drastic transformations in higher education under way. One is the devastation of the public university system and its replacement by private players who will be given free rein to run universities as profit-making organisations. This process predates the Narendra Modi regime, although some of the most dangerous changes have been proposed by this regime. Among these are the Higher Education Commission of India Bill; the Higher Education Financing Agency, which will give loans to higher education institutions, rather than their getting grants from the government; and the Institutions of Eminence; about all of which much has been written (Sundar 2018; Kidwai 2018a; Qamar 2018; Ravi 2018; Ongole et al 2018). Here, we will focus only on one aspect of this commoditisation of education as a profit-making venture—the massive nationwide push to make entrance examinations online.

The second change is related to the Hindutva ideology and the violation of every rule and norm, to not only fill universities with faculty members vetted and passed by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), but also to control the ideological colour of the student body in universities, especially JNU (Mahaprashasta 2018). Irrespective of the elections won by the Bharatiya Janata Party since 2014 or the means by which these elections have been won, what is clear is that in university after university, young people have decisively rejected the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), the storm troopers of the RSS (Telegraph 2018; Times of India 2018a; Goswami 2018). This is the context in which, in JNU, it is being argued that multiple choice questions are more “objective” than essay type questions, that online examinations facilitate access, and are more secure and less susceptible to bias and tampering. However, these assertions are far from substantiated by facts on the ground.

Are MCQs More ‘Objective’ Than Essay Type Questions?

The university administration’s statements on the shift to online entrance exams refer to the elimination of "bias" in selection of students (Times of India 2018b). The implication is that prior to this, student selection was biased. In a faculty meeting at which one of the authors was present, a newly appointed faculty member stated that there are “complaints” that JNU faculty set questions that are ideologically coloured and select those students who write “left” answers. There are two kinds of misrepresentations in such allegations. First, like elsewhere, the JNU faculty’s political opinions range across the entire political spectrum, and even the minority who would identify themselves as left, differ fundamentally and vigorously with one another on many issues. Even a cursory examination of the nationalism lectures (JNUTA 2017) will establish this; the range of opinions that claim or reconstruct the idea of nationalism is breathtaking. In any case, for all serious teachers (in JNU and everywhere else), the goal of teaching is to equip students to think critically, even about what we teach. Right from the entrance examination onwards, teachers are less concerned with the substance of the argument, and more with the manner of making an argument. 

For example, consider two typical JNU entrance examination questions: 

“Is the multiplicity of languages in India a problem or its asset?”
“Is affirmative action for disadvantaged groups contrary to the principle of equality? Give reasons for your answer. Compare the policy of reservations in India with affirmative action policy in the USA.”

Most questions for entrance exams are based on what is taught in undergraduate syllabi all over the country, and test both knowledge of an issue as well as the ability to think critically. Whether the answer considers linguistic diversity to be an asset or a problem, whether it supports affirmative action or does not, is irrelevant. Do the students show an awareness of at least one key text? Are they aware? Do they address the theoretical and empirical arguments both in favour of and against the position? Evaluation of these answer scripts is done by hundreds of teachers over weeks, then moderated by another smaller set for consistency of marking. What can be a more objective process? Many centres have already introduced an element of MCQs alongside essays, often based on comprehension of set passages from a variety of well-known texts of social sciences or humanities.

In fact, closed MCQs can be more ideological, because the students have to choose one of four options; they cannot consider a fifth option. This works only if the questions are purely factual. Take the University Grants Commission’s National Eligibility Test (UGC NET) that candidates have to clear in order to teach in universities. Ever since this examination with closed multiple choice answers was inaugurated in the late 1980s, it has been clear that candidates who are genuinely research- and teaching- oriented, find it difficult to qualify. This is because the UGC-appointed “experts” who set the questions seem to have no clue about how to set questions that test reasoning. Equally importantly, the questions are biased towards particular ideologies to which, if the student does not subscribe, they are forced nevertheless to choose the only “correct” option that remains after the impossible ones are ruled out.

Consider two such questions that appeared in recent UGC NET examinations. In January 2017, the following question was posed:

Q. 47. Given below are two premises (a) and (b). From those two premises four conclusions (i), (ii), (iii) & (iv) are drawn. Select the code that states the conclusions validly drawn from the premises (taking singly or jointly).
Premises: (a) Untouchability is a curse (b) All hot pans are untouchable
Conclusions: (i) All hot pans are curse (ii) Some untouchable things are hot pans (iii) All curses are untouchability (iv) Some curses are untouchability
Codes:
(1) (i) and (ii)
(2) (ii) and (iii)
(3) (iii) and (iv)
(4) (ii) and (iv)

Apart from the embarrassing grammatical errors, consider what the question assumes: that untouchability is a “curse,” (a term that implies divine or supernatural intervention), not a phenomenon produced by and deliberately maintained through socio-economic–cultural structures of oppression and exclusion; that “untouchability” across different registers of the word can be equated—fingers would be burnt by touching hot pans; some humans are polluted by other humans’ touch. And all four conclusions are illogical in terms of the premises, so although option 4 appears to be the “correct” option, it is deeply unsatisfying both in terms of the idea conveyed as well as logic. More importantly, it is politically loaded.

The second example is from the UGC NET examination conducted in July 2018:

Q. Given below are two statements, one labeled as Assertion A and other labeled as Reason R. Select the correct answer from the code given below.
Assertion A: The Cold War and decolonisation process had discouraged more active involvement by United Nations within state.
Reason R: States have national interest as its prime interest.
Code:
1. Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A
2. Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A
3. A is true but R is false
4. R is true but A is false.

Once again both A and R are spectacularly ungrammatical, but the “correct” option according to UGC here is 1, as made public at the time of declaration of results. Now, both A and R are highly debatable, and to state that either is “correct” is ridiculous. They are not facts; both are statements that come out of ideological and theoretical assumptions that are deeply contested within the concerned discipline. Why did the role of the United Nations decline? Do states act as rational individuals do? Do states have clear internally homogeneous “national interests”? The last two questions would be answered in the affirmative by the realist school of international relations, but there are substantial critiques of this school of thought as well. If A and R were posed as questions they would have elicited the range of debates around these issues. Instead a student has no option but to agree that both A and R are “correct” and that A follows from R. What if a thoughtful student has a critique of realism in international relations theory and chooses option 3? Even someone who accepts realism could choose 2, which seems to be an equally viable option. The point is that all these are debatable opinions, not correct and wrong answers.

Online MCQ and Human Error

There is a possibility that even factual MCQ exams may, through human error, have the wrong answer key. In 2015, not a single candidate passed the UGC NET examination for Persian, because out of 125 questions in the paper, 94 had wrong answers. According to the answer key, for example, the Zoroastrian god is called Khuda (it is Ahura Mazda) and the Tomb of Ferdowsi is situated in Iran’s Qazvin (it is located in Tus, Iran). A possible explanation that was being considered by teachers of Persian was that a technician may have uploaded the wrong answer key. The UGC chairperson denied receiving any complaint, and students said that despite writing to both the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the UGC regarding the magnitude of the problem, they were told by the authorities to follow the standard procedure of grievance redressal, that is, paying Rs 1,000 per question to challenge the answer (Shankar 2015).

Now, here are four more extremely disturbing features of the new entrance examinations.[1] One, they are not just MCQ, they are going to be entirely online. This has implications for all entrance examinations in India, not only for JNU. The remaining three features are more JNU specific. 

Two, the JNU administration requires that the answer key be provided in advance, before the exams are conducted. Three, the questions will be selected from a question bank prepared not only by JNU faculty members, but by “experts from across the country in addition to JNU faculty,” as per the minutes of the academic council (AC). Four, it is not clear how JNU’s deprivation point system[2] will be applied if at all, and what this will mean for social justice. Let us consider these one by one. 

We begin with two relatively smaller (though deeply problematic) issues, then move on to a much more serious problem.

Technically Unsound and Discriminatory 

In JNU, the tender for the service provider has been floated. Bids were opened on 19 September 2018, and the selected company will be entrusted with the task of conducting the JNU entrance exam in December 2018. This is hasty and is bound to result in massive glitches. Each exam site all over India will have to be tested for connectivity, several test runs have to be done, and a contingency plan in the case of failure has to be planned and tested as well. How is this to be accomplished in such a short period?

In the last year alone, several online tests in different parts of India have faced serious problems. Servers have been down and the university website has had “technical problems” (Hindustan Times 2018); the examination paper did not open in the Common Law Admission Test held in Lucknow at 15 different exam centres, thereby substantially reducing the time candidates had to answer the questions (Times of India 2018c). A candidate said that she had wasted 20 minutes because “advertisements kept popping up” (Hindu 2015). Earlier in 2012, there had been over a hundred hacking attempts in the medical postgraduate entrance examination (IndiaTVNews 2012), an experience that had been replicated in the National Eligibility cum Entrance Exam (NEET) (for medical and dental undergraduate programmes) too (Deccan Herald 2018). In fact, it is noteworthy that the NEET exam is now being reversed from being a bi-annual online exam to, once again, being conducted once a year, and as a handwritten test.

Another concern driving the change is that the computer-based exam may put aspirants from rural areas at a disadvantage (Majumder 2018). 

Similar technical glitches marred the central entrance test of the Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya in Indore for two consecutive years, with problems in downloading question papers and answer sheets, and terminals having to be restarted several times. In 2017, one exam had to be cancelled and in 2018, although the situation in two centres was such that the exams should have been cancelled, they were not, in order to save the administration embarrassment (Free Press Journal 2018). The Mumbai University vice chancellor was asked to proceed on leave in 2017 after massive errors in the evaluation of entrance exams led to unprecedented delay in declaring results (Malik 2017).

Looking at all the examples above, wherein tens of thousands of students’ futures were risked, it is apparent that this system is unstable and full of technical glitches that have not been ironed out. In fact, the reversal of the NEET experiment is an important example that JNU must study seriously. JNU has a national level entrance examination and it is because the tests are held in remote areas, and have been handwritten, that the university has been able to fulfil the regional diversity and representation mandated by the JNU Act. Online tests, with erratic and unstable internet connections, will not only disable students from remote areas and marginal sections of society from competing, they will also pose a grave problem as seen above, even for those in towns and cities with access to computer terminals and the internet.

The IIT JEE is being cited as a successful example of entrance exams with MCQ conducted online, but this is misleading. The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), especially in the humanities and social sciences, do not have online examinations at the PhD level. These tests are conducted in each of the IITs, with separate question papers that are set by different component parts of the humanities and social sciences faculty. The tests are handwritten. Even for the MA entrance, as in the case of IIT Madras, the entrance test has two parts, an online and an essay type, so that it can take care of the specific needs of the subjects that the students are being tested for.  

Online Entrance Exams—What Are the Logistics and Who Profits?

The claim that online exams are cheaper than pen and paper exams is not backed by any evidence. The cost of the software and of the multiple nation-wide centres with computer terminals is never openly discussed. Online examinations are in fact the more expensive option, given that the players in the field are giant, mostly international companies like Prometric, Pearson VUE, MeritTrac, Aptech, and Eduquity. It is conceded that computer-based tests “cost nearly thrice as much as a pen and paper test,” but the pay-off supposedly is that they come with greater potential for scaling and the eventual reduction of the price tag. "The initial investment needed for this is high, but over a period it pays off," said G Raghurama, deputy director for academics at the Birla Institute of Technology and Science (Business World 2014). The contract for conducting the IIM CAT examination for example, is $40 million (Abrar 2009). About 2 lakh candidates take that exam (India Today 2017), so JNU costs (for 1 lakh candidates) may be less, but still a huge amount for a public university. How much reduction is likely even in the long term? Who pays the costs? At some point very soon, the costs will be transferred to the candidates.

As for logistics, most faculty have no clue about what is involved. We need to understand that the company that wins a tender will have to outsource the nationwide conduct of any entrance examination to certain identified partners. These are smaller firms all over the country that will conduct the actual examinations, thus expanding the circle of un-supervisable entities. Given the numbers of candidates involved (more than a lakh for JNU) (NDTV 2017), it is clear that computer terminals cannot be provided for every single candidate at once. The exams will, therefore, be conducted in batches at every centre. This requires, for every annual examination, multiple sets of questions, because in MCQ format, questions cannot be repeated. For example, for every 100 candidates, there would have to be at least five sets of questions, assuming every batch is about 20 candidates. There would have to be a trade- off here between the number of examination centres one can have and the minimum size of the facility that one is willing to accept. And none of these questions can be repeated in the following years—all of this because there is only one correct answer to every question. Essay type questions on the other hand, can be re-circulated over time because there is no one correct answer, and the reasoning and arguments are what matter. So, enormous banks of questions have to be built up. What will be the quality of questions generated in such numbers? As a matter of interest, the JNU authorities have asked for only two sets of questions from the JNU faculty. Who will set the remaining questions?

Returning to the question of costs, we, as long-time JNU faculty, are aware that in the case of JNU, the income from sale of prospectuses was always higher than the cost of conducting the handwritten examination all over India. In a cost–benefit analysis, therefore, JNU made a profit at the end of the entrance examinations. How much more expensive will online examinations be? Where do we find this information? What is interesting is that the first several pages of links on any search query about costs of online examinations, are advertisements from software providers. Some of these also offer built-in question banks! What does education look like to such corporations and companies that will offer questions, answers, as well as the software to run these tests? What is the academic input that remains?

There is widespread cost-cutting in universities nation-wide (and on essential services like health) (Kumar 2015; Nanda 2018; Saldanha et al 2018; Kalra nd), but at the same time there is huge investment in biometric machines and online entrance exams (Borwankar and Mahamulkar 2018; India Today 2012; Kumar 2017; Khan 2015). For example, in Rajasthan University, the fund crunch was making it difficult for universities and colleges to implement biometric attendance mandated by the state government. The vice chancellor of Rajasthan University said they have been under deficit financing of 70 to 80 crore annually and the financial liability of compulsory biometric attendance was huge (Times of India 2017).

So where are universities cutting costs to pay for online examinations? In JNU, cost-cutting is affecting the library, for one. Faculty members of JNU have learnt from meetings in library committees that starting next year, we are looking at heavy budget cuts for the library that will leave us without access to online data bases such as JStor and Muse. So, it is not as if all online solutions are being prioritised.

IIT Bombay faculty have not been paid their salaries for September (Mohanty 2018). The priorities of the government are straightforward. Save on “frills” like faculty salaries and library facilities, and raise resources from students through massive fee hikes to pay predatory corporations for high technology solutions for problems that did not exist (New Indian Express 2018). 

Prakash Javadekar, the union minister of Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), recently urged schools not to come to the government with “a begging bowl”, but to raise resources through their alumni (Indian Express 2018). He needs reminding that government funds are generated by taxpayers, who include the poorest person capable of purchasing salt or chilli powder, for indirect taxes contribute disproportionately to India’s income from taxes.

“Due to the failure in bringing enough well-off Indians into the direct tax net, the country has been mobilising revenue through indirect tax collection. In 2015-16, direct taxes contributed only 51 per cent of the tax revenue, lower than in recent years (and even the government’s expectations) and the lowest since 2007–08. An increasing share of indirect taxes in total revenue collection is cause for alarm because indirect taxes affect all Indians alike, rich and poor. Indeed, given that the poor generally spend a greater fraction of their income on essentials than the rich do, with wider indirect taxation, they end up paying a higher individual tax rate than people considerably wealthier.” (Hindu 2016)

The real question is this—what forces are behind the massive thrust to transform all entrance exams into online ones? Who exactly are the “stakeholders” interested in making a strong pitch for online examinations (and other high expense technological fixes like biometric attendance)? What kinds of monetary incentives are circulating in our systems to push institutions into this disastrous, technologically driven mode of conducting entrance exams and perhaps eventually, all examinations?

The experience of the United States is instructive. British publishing giant Pearson has virtual monopoly over all aspects of education from testing to online classes and student data systems. An investigation by Politico found that:

“Pearson stands to make tens of millions in taxpayer dollars and cuts in student tuition from deals arranged without competitive bids in states from Florida to Texas. The review also found Pearson’s contracts set forth specific performance targets—but don’t penalise the company when it fails to meet those standards. And in the higher education realm, the contracts give Pearson extensive access to personal student data, with few constraints on how it is used.” (Simon 2015)

This investigation said that “Pearson has aggressive lobbyists, top-notch marketing and a highly skilled sales team.” But eventually, as Jonathan Zimmerman, an education historian at New York University said:

“The policies that Pearson is benefiting from may be wrongheaded in a million ways, but it strikes me as deeply unfair to blame Pearson for them. When the federal government starts doing things like requiring all states to test all kids, there’s going to be gold in those hills. The people we’ve elected have created a landscape that’s allowed pearson to prosper.”(Simon 2015)

Who are the big players in the education software business in India, and what kinds of incentives are being provided to decision makers? What is visible are the consistent and aggressive moves to introduce technology into every aspect of education, from entrance exams, to student and teacher attendance, to eventually, most likely, internal exams as well—all in the name of progress. 

It is unclear what the substance of this progress is. However, when you simply “follow the money,” we suspect that very different goals than progress will be revealed.

Now for the JNU-specific issues.

Problems with Giving the Answer Key in Advance

The administration did not explain why the answer key is needed before the examination is conducted. When this point came up in a press note circulated by the students’ union, the administration’s public response to the media was that candidates should know their score at the moment they finish the exam (JNU 2018). This is a fresh point, not made by the administration earlier, and it is not clear what purpose is served by students knowing the number of questions they have got right, if, in any case, they will know their position on the merit list and whether they have been selected. The norm is for the answer key to be revealed after the examination in the presence of the paper setter. However, the JNU administration had initially insisted that the answer key must be supplied to it on a pen drive before the examination is conducted. Further, it also gave itself two weeks to proofread the question papers. Both these requirements made the JNU faculty suspicious. 

Faced with sustained questioning by the faculty, the JNU administration has made some amendments to the answer key policy and allowed it to be retained with the dean of the school, but the policy requiring submission of the answer key in advance has not been revised. Furthermore, this provision is only relevant for questions framed by JNU faculty, but not for those set by the outside experts. A new development on this, is a point in the latest guidelines that states that after the examinations are completed, the question papers and answer keys will be uploaded on the JNU website, giving applicants the opportunity to review and question the designated answers within a week or so and raise concerns with the Director of Admissions on “the appropriateness and precision” of any answer. The final merit list will be prepared after this process.[3] Our concern is that this goes beyond allowing the examinee to check if the computer has been correct in its processing. The terms “appropriateness and precision” allow the possibility of the student questioning the rationale of the choice given as correct in the multiple choice question. How will differences be adjudicated if there is a variance between the understanding of the examiner/s and the examinee? We fear that the final merit list will become open to manipulation at this stage.

Outside Experts to Set Questions

There is no such thing as an expert in any discipline, a term used by the UGC with no thought whatsoever. Trained academics have distinct competences in their fields, and nobody can be an expert across a discipline. Different centres in JNU have their own academic focus and areas they specialise in, and entrance examinations should reflect this. Most of JNU’s centres are interdisciplinary, and the syllabi for each programme have many subject area components in them. As a consequence, questions are also framed so as to elicit acquaintance with more than one discipline simultaneously. 

An entrance examination is fundamentally different in its goals from standardised tests like the UGC NET exam or even the Graduate Records Examination (GRE), which evaluate a candidate’s state of knowledge. An entrance examination, however, is conducted to evaluate the eligibility of a candidate for a particular programme. How then can faculty, who are not teaching in that programme, claim to bring in any expertise? Finally, and most importantly, who are the experts from outside JNU who will set questions, how will they be selected, and by whom? 

The decision to include outside experts is recorded in the minutes of the latest AC held in July 2018. AC members have told us that the matter of outside experts was not specifically mentioned in the AC, but it appears in the minutes. The discrepancy between discussions in the AC and recorded minutes is characteristic of the current administration that consistently does not even record dissent to routinely concocted minutes. Since this has now been recorded as a decision passed in the AC, the JNU administration can have every question set by outside experts.

From the Perspective of Admission Policy and Social Justice

Since the 2017–18 admissions, JNU’s progressive admission policy has been laid to waste by the current vice chancellor. The 2017–18 admissions saw an 83% cut in seats for the research degrees of the university, and final admissions revealed that only 159 students were admitted into the university for these programmes. Of the 131 seats left vacant, over a hundred were for socially disadvantaged categories. This led to massive violations of the reservation policy. In 2018–19 too, where the fierce resistance by JNU faculty and students ensured that 720 of the 950-odd seats were advertised, the share of reserved categories (which in all preceding years has been very close to the constitutionally mandated reservation percentage) is abysmally low. Further, the representation of students from backward regions and from low income groups has come down sharply, as the JNU system of awarding deprivation points to these students has been dispensed with (Kidwai 2018b).

One of the reasons why JNU could not fill its seats in 2017–18 and why the social justice component in JNU research degree admissions has weakened so drastically, is because of the policy that sets the minimum marks in the written exam to qualify for the viva voce part of the examination, at 50%. No other institution sets this high a qualifying percentage for research examinations across disciplines. In fact, most do not set this high a mark for any programme of study. JNU faculty were first orally informed by officials that the online test uniformly across programmes at every level—undergraduate, postgraduate and research—will adopt this very percentage of 50% as the qualifying mark, but the two sets of guidelines that have been issued do not make any mention of what the qualifying marks for any of the tests are going to be. This will affect all students, those who may be encountering the format for the first time or have had no time or the means to develop familiarity with it; but it will hit first generation learners the hardest. The JNU entrance examination until now has enabled teachers to select students with the best potential, because it employed a fair benchmark of minimum attainment, which was not affected by factors beyond the student’s control. 

The apprehension is that this unique innovation of JNU, made in service of the requirements of the JNU Act, is now being abolished across the board. Similarly, no clarification is forthcoming on the mandatory relaxations in pass marks on written examinations to be given to reserved categories.

All in all, the JNU faculty’s concern about the changes being wrought on the JNU admission policy is the intent to alter the very character of JNU and the quality of its programmes, and that this is being done in a way that fosters profiteering and discrimination. That this could breed corruption is a distinct possibility, particularly because the process has now entirely been taken out of the JNU faculty’s hands. 

For the first time in JNU’s history, the entire admission policy has been taken out of the control of the AC. Meanwhile, the AC has, in the term of the current vice chancellor, been substantially reshaped by various means—a) overlooking the established principle of appointing chairs of centres by rotation so that chairs arbitrarily and personally appointed by the vice chancellor are now members of the AC; b) by the vice chancellor inviting to the AC, chairs and members of committees that have no place in the AC, such as the Placement Committee; as well as individuals personally decided by the vice chancellor c) by expelling legitimate members of the AC such as the dean of School of Arts and Aesthetics for supposedly “disruptive” behaviour when she tried to place her dissent on record, and then not permitting any representation from that school in the AC. The committee formally set up by the JNU administration to oversee admissions for all programmes comprises a few JNU faculty selected by the vice chancellor (with no representation across schools), and some faculty from IIT Delhi and University of Delhi. A task force set up by the vice chancellor is to take charge of the online test exam. Many centres have held faculty meetings after which detailed letters were sent to the director of admissions, seeking more information and clarifications, and placing on record the disquiet with both on-line examinations and exclusive MCQ format for research degree programmes. However, no response has been received from the administration to any of these. It may be noted that such a major policy change should have followed JNU norms and rules that require extensive discussion at centre level, followed by schools, board of studies, then the AC. However, this policy has been handed down by the administration to be merely implemented. Here, we must take note of the recent judgment on a petition by Students’ Federation of India, challenging seat cuts, the 50% minimum in written exams and admissions based entirely on vivas. The judgment sharply criticised the JNU administration for its waste of national resources (New Indian Express 2017). In the light of this, we must recognise that what the vice chancellor is pushing through is yet another colossal anti-national policy change.

Finally, as stated earlier, this question goes far beyond JNU or any particular university. Every Indian with an interest in affordable and high-quality higher education should ask questions about the massive push towards online examinations. Do students benefit from this? And who profits?

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