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India’s On-Line COC examination draws global interest

Posted to India’s On-Line COC examination draws global interest (by on July 9, 2012

Maritime administrations worldwide take interest in the on-line examination system for certificate of competency being conducted by the Directorate General of Shipping, Government of India

Maritime regulatory authorities, the world over, are showing keen interest in the on-line examination system, ‘ePariksha’ for seafarers who appear for the certificate of competency (COC) examination. The Director General of Shipping (DGS), Ministry of Shipping, Government of India is the first to successfully launch and conduct COC examinations on-line in the world.

Several enquires have begun flooding in within a span of three weeks of its launch. Regulatory authorities of at least two nations including the Directorate General of Maritime Affairs, Sultanate of Oman and the Maritime Administration of Bangladesh known as Department of Shipping, have begun consultations with the Directorate General of Shipping, Ministry of Shipping, government of India for having similar systems introduced in their country.

The COC for marine engineer officers Class IV, Part B (written examination) which was the first to be put on-line last month is being conducted simultaneously from Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Kochi, Vishakhapatnam and New Delhi Centers. This has facilitated raising the capacity to a total of 170 candidates to take the examination each day. The 3 hour examination slot has been reduced to 2 hours with 10 papers out of the 11 being conducted on-line.    

Amitava Bannerjee, Chief Surveyor informed that the students wanting to take e-Pariksha can apply for the exams from anywhere in the world. They receive regular feedbacks, updates and reviews, all without setting foot in the DG’s office, except once for document verification. After verification they get to know the center assigned to them for appearing for the examination.

“Each student gets a separate set of questions as they are dynamically generated question papers from a question bank.” Mr Bannerjee said. “Ten out of 11 papers are being conducted on-line since the drawing paper cannot be conducted on-line. Corrections are done on-the-spot and this computerized system enables the declaration of results even before the candidate leaves the hall. The system ensures consistency in correction. To top it all the students have the luxury of receiving provisional certificates. 

”Besides, easing the pressures on MEO students, the system would tremendously reduce the burden on the DGS as it will not only reduce footfalls at the DG’s office but also help generate all analytical reports. This system has been put in place because there is a tremendous shortage of examiners thus causing delay in declaring results. As for the oral examinations these will continue on the old basis and will be conducted over a period of a month and a half because of the shortage of examiners.”

The directorate has received all round praise from the trade especially from Indian seafarers who all these years have had to put up with prolong delays and plenty of difficulties while going through the process of appearing for the COC examinations. At the moment however, only the engineering branch has come out with the on-line system of examination and seafarers are keenly awaiting news from the nautical side who also have been working on conducting examinations on-line.

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