The Catholic University of Eastern Africa is taking students for a ride by engineering missing marks and extorting money from unassuming students, information has reached Kenyan Herald. In an email we received a few weeks ago, we went further to investigate. We found out similar grievances have been brought up by students and we have been forced to publish this email to bring to the public the ongoing academic fraud at this University. Here is the email in detail.


Dear Kenyan Herald.

The Catholic University of Eastern Africa is taking students for a ride by engineering missing marks and extorting money from unassuming students. This fraud could cost students and parents up to Sh. 120 million for one trimester alone. This story trended on Twitter in March 2019 under #AcademiaCartels as students from other universities chimed in as well. 

A reliable source at CUEA has made information available that lists all the missing marks CUEA students accrued in the third trimester of 2018. We can also confirm the information includes the exam type (cat or final exam), student ID, course unit number, the academic year as well as the actual mark each of each student. 

An analysis shows that 3,688 students had missing grades that were equally distributed between missing CATs and final exams.  Overall, there were 9,512 grades missing in the last trimester, with the Law Faculty being the worst culprit.

32% of students in the first year GS course requirement (this is an introductory course to bible studies, computer literacy, communications skills) have missing grades. Missing grades from the first year often haunt students right before graduation because the registry frequently can’t find grades in the system, according to several students we spoke to.

 

If you look at top ten courses with the most registered students, eight of them are taught at the law faculty (GLS unit codes). 1,424 students in the eight law courses are missing 100% of their grades and all of them are in their third or fourth year of studying.  These students, too, will have a hard time graduating on time. 

 

To make matters worse, it seems to be a deliberate policy at CUEA to fail students and force them to retake exams so CUEA can earn additional money.

 

In an email sent to the Catholic University of Eastern Africa Students Organisation (C.U.E.A.S.O.) and dated February 6, 2019 and from CUEA’s Deputy Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, Prof Dr. Kaku Sagary Nokoe, he gives clear instructions to Heads of Departments about dealing with missing grades. We quote directly from the email:

 

1). A student who refuses to write an exam and is not granted permission to miss the exam, scores ZERO in the exam. The course mark will be the CAT plus ZERO, and obviously will lead to an F grade. The mark entered in the system MUST not be blank (missing)

 2). A student who attended classes, missed CAT but took exam, does not have a missing score but rather the total of ZERO mark from CAT and the EXAM mark leading to course mark, which can have a grade from F to A (assuming exam is 70/70). CAT should not be missing. 

3). A student who registered for the course and ATTENDED classes but refused to write CAT and EXAM, gets a ZERO mark, and F grade. 

4). A student who registered for a course but neither attended classes nor wrote CAT/EXAM gets a Z grade, with opportunity to defer to when the course is next on offer. Such information must be communicated by the HoD to the Registrar and Credit Control. 

5). Students with F grade can remedy when units are next on offer via Supplementary (maximum 40% to replace Fail mark) or can take course afresh (with both Failed and Retake Units and scores on transcripts for computation of CWA/GPA). 

Once a Zero mark has been entered into the grading system, students will be forced to pay again for a course already taken. With each course costing Sh. 13,000, CUEA could extort over Sh. 120 million from unassuming students and parents for just one trimester.  

Over the course of a four-year degree program, an average student will be mercilessly fleeced by CUEA and have a hard time graduating on time. Yet we have spoken to students who had missing grades two days prior to CUEA’s 37thgraduation ceremony and they found themselves on the podium collecting their degrees on October 19, 2018.

 

How did they manage this? 

 

Lecturers and HoDs hold mock exams for students with missing grades and of course money exchanges hands for this facilitation. Grades are then entered on a Missing Mark-Up Sheet and stamped with the HoD stamp.  

The Development Studies Department led by Dr. Johnson Mavole and Mr. Michael Tedd Okuku was even more brazen in handling missing grades with about 200 students graduating last October. This department is also notorious for lecturers signing off on undergraduate projects and Masters theses that were photocopied from previous students. 

According to an associate professor in the Social Sciences Department, the Vice Chancellor’s Auditing Team actually raided the Development Studies Department in September 2018 and found out that 100 per cent of undergraduate projects did not meet the minimum quality standards.  

But there is no end to CUEA’s greed and it fleeces students through other schemes. For example, a undergraduate from the Social Science Department who earned a degree a few years back, said that he was charged for courses in Marketing and Corporate Law. Yet he was not required to take theses courses and they didn't appear on his transcript. To this day, CUEA owes him around Sh. 80,000 for overcharged fees. 

Missing grades have been a thorny issue at CUEA for a long time and a major cause is CUEA not paying part-time instructors who then take off with examination booklets. Part-time instructors form the bulk of CUEA’s teaching staff. Before the current trimester began in January of this year, CUEA’s full-time lecturers went on strike over delayed wages and a reduction in the Provident Fund. 


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