Vagisha Kaushik|Sep 15, 2021
DU colleges see low turnout on first day of practical classes for final year students
DU reopening news: The Delhi University started physical classes from today for undergraduate and postgraduate final-year students.
NEW DELHI: Delhi University colleges reported thin attendance on the first day of resumption of practical laboratory sessions for final-year undergraduate and postgraduate students on Wednesday. Principals and teachers said the low attendance might be due to a majority of outstation students still being unsure of coming back and may be watching how the COVID-19 situation turns out in the national capital.
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At Ramjas College, which has nearly 1,000 students across science streams in the final year, 20-25 students came to the institution but only seven went to the lab, said its principal Manoj Khanna. "The attendance was quite thin. Students are seeing each other and analysing whether their classmates are coming. There is a fear in the minds of parents. I think we will get to know the situation after Diwali," he said.
Abha Dev Habib, who teaches Physics at Miranda House, said that in a class of 80 final-year students in her department, 10 per cent had reported for practical class on the first day. They were excited to be back in college because they are getting to do the practical sessions in labs, she said.
"The second wave (COVID-19) had happened in April and May and parents might want the vaccination cycle to be completed. The seriousness in attending classes will come if the university will announce offline exams. Because of the postgraduate entrance exams and other such entrance exams, students are anyways not serious about the final year. Students are finding online exams easier since they have the option to choose between the offline and online mode," she said.
The professor also said parents might send their children to colleges in October after the mid-semester break. Hem Chand Jain, principal of Deen Dayal Upadhyaya College, said out of 500 third-year science students, only 20 students came on the first day. "A majority of the students in science courses are from outside Delh and very few are from the national capital. I think students from outside Delhi will wait and watch the COVID-19 situation," he said.
Jain said they have also staggered the classes and given two days for every course. "We have 11 lab-based courses and two days have been given to each to conduct lab sessions on a rotational basis. That means one-third students would be called. So, the numbers are still okay," he said, adding that even in the pre-pandemic time, the first day would see low attendance.
Manoj Sinha, principal of Aryabhatta College and general secretary of Delhi University Principals' Association said colleges are not calling in many people and most of them are not coming. "Colleges are treading cautiously. In our college today, 10 psychology students came and 10 alumni came to donate some safety equipment for COVID-19. It was more of an introductory class today. Our computer science department is holding consultations with students and forming groups," he said.
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