A study carried out at St Petersburg University has shown that, because of the coronavirus pandemic, even now, a month before the exams, graduating students are experiencing serious stress in connection with the upcoming state final certification. Experts concluded that the information agenda and the breaking of the routine rhythm of life can seriously prevent students from showing the real level of their knowledge during the final examinations.

Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods Marina Lavrikova took a decision to reduce the number of examinations for those programmes where it is possible.

According to the decision, the final examination will not be held for students of those programmes where, in addition to it, the state final certification also involves the defence of graduation projects. ‘When organising the educational process online, we give attention to the psychological climate. The conducted study showed that graduating students are most worried about the coming examinations. Among the most common fears are: the inability to establish emotional contact with the examiner; and possible technical problems that will not make it possible to demonstrate their level of training to the utmost. Therefore, this will prevent them from getting a University degree this year,’ says Marina Lavrikova. The conclusions are also confirmed by the appeal of the University Student Council with a request to cancel, as an exception, interdisciplinary examinations as part of the state final certification in the 2019/20 academic year.

My decision to cancel the final examination in the current conditions will not prevent our students from getting higher education degrees.

Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods Marina Lavrikova

Graduating bachelor’s students in jurisprudence and clinical residency students will have to take their final examinations as part of the State Final Certification this academic year since these programmes do not provide for the defence of graduation projects. Psychologists from St Petersburg University and representatives of other University’s services will take all necessary measures to ensure that the online final certification is as calm for these students as possible.