Exam Malpractices Raise Concerns in Nursing and Midwifery Education

Exam Malpractices Raise Concerns in Nursing and Midwifery Education
Exam Malpractices Raise Concerns in Nursing and Midwifery Education
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Kampala, Uganda – The state minister for Higher Education, Dr. John Muyingo, has expressed concern about students engaging in exam misconduct in nursing and midwifery programs. He believes that such misconduct can have serious consequences for the healthcare profession in the country.

Dr. Muyingo pointed out that exam malpractice in healthcare education could lead to unqualified individuals practicing medicine, which, in turn, might jeopardize patient safety. During the release of the final semester results for nurses and midwives in June 2023, he emphasized the need to address this issue promptly to maintain the integrity of healthcare education and practice.

Expressing his frustration, Dr. Muyingo said, “I am disappointed by those who engaged in examination malpractice. The exams were not leaked, yet some students still cheated during the examinations.”

In response to these concerns, the board decided to withhold, nullify, and cancel the results of ten final candidates who violated the regulations set by the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Examinations Board (UNMEB). According to UNMEB’s executive secretary, Helen Mukakarisa Kataratambi, all the affected candidates admitted to their involvement in the misconduct.

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Among the cases reported, one candidate from St. Eliza School of Nursing and Midwifery, enrolled in a Certificate in Nursing program, was caught with a piece of paper in the examination room containing practical paper scenarios. This candidate will undergo a six-month clinical placement, followed by a report submission to the board.

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At Mityana Institute of Nursing and Midwifery, a candidate was found with a forged examination card. This candidate will face a one-year referral period, re-sit all examinations, and is expected to complete the program in December 2024.

Additionally, three certificate candidates from Mityana and one from KIU Western campus were discovered with written notes on pieces of paper. Consequently, the entire semester results for these four candidates were canceled. Furthermore, a candidate from St. John School of Nursing and Midwifery presented a fraudulent logbook without comments and signatures from tutors. This candidate has been given a second opportunity for a hearing, with the results remaining withheld, following the principles of natural justice.

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At Mildmay Uganda School of Nursing and Midwifery, a candidate submitted a logbook with forged signatures from tutors, clinical instructors, and mentors. The board’s decision is to refer the candidate for six months, require a new logbook, and assign supervision by the school principal at a clinical site.

Finally, two candidates from Kuluva and Lacor schools of Nursing and Midwifery submitted identical research reports to the board, resulting in the cancellation of their results for the respective paper.

In terms of general performance, out of the 34,918 continuing candidates, 30,122 successfully passed their examinations and progressed to subsequent semesters. An additional 4,493 candidates received ungraded marks, while 156 candidates were discontinued due to having exhausted the prescribed three attempts for repeating the same paper. Mukakarisa mentioned that the discontinued candidates have the option to restart their courses if they are passionate about the profession.

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