DU students' internet related issues recur on day 2 of open book exams

DU students' internet related issues recur on day 2 of open book exams
Press Trust of India | Aug 12, 2020 - 11:19 a.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: Around 32,000 Delhi University undergraduate and postgraduate students appeared for the online open book exams on the second day with many of them claiming that they faced issues in uploading their answer sheets to the varsity portal.

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The university has maintained that it is opting for the online open book exams as a one-time measure owing to the Coronavirus pandemic. The varsity's decision to hold exams had been opposed by students and teachers who had been demanding that the exams be scrapped and students be promoted on the basis of past performance and internal assessments.

On the first day of commencement of the final examination on Monday, students had faced issues in uploading answer sheets and the same issue arose on the second day too. The common service centres facilitating Delhi University's online open-book exams here said only a handful of students are availing the service and most of them faced issues while uploading their answer sheets.

2G internet connectivity in Kashmir

Samiya Aziz, a student of Zakir Husain College who is currently in her hometown in Kashmir, said she had gone to her friend's place to write the exam since she did not want to use the 2G network available on her phone. Her exam was in the 11.30 am to 3.30 pm shift. "I wrote the paper and everything was smooth till the time I started uploading it. The site crashed and I could not upload my answer sheet when there was only a minute left for the time limit ot finish. I mailed it to the college ID and I hope it is accepted," she said.

Her friend Bushra, who is also in Kashmir, used her phone's 2G connection to take the exam and could only upload the answer sheets at 4 pm. "I am tensed. I could not upload my answer sheets on the portal and then I sent it to the college ID. I am hoping that my answer sheets are accepted because there was a delay of almost half an hour," she said.

Delay in uploading answer key

A student, requesting anonymity, said the OBE portal crashed multiple times and it was stressful for students. "The varsity kept saying that the portal would work smoothly but we had to resort to sending an email in the end. The paper was quite lengthy. Some students even contacted the nodal officer for doubts, but they only got vague answers like 'no specific guidelines'. It was a disappointing experience for most of the students," he said.

Raushan Kumar, a resident of Muzaffarpur in Bihar, said it was a repeat of what happened in mock exams as the portal crashed and he could not upload his answer sheets. He had to email them to the university which caused a further delay and he feared that his answer sheets would not be accepted for evaluation.

Power disruption, connectivity issues

Other students also raised similar issues -- network issues, power failure at home due to which the page blanked out multiple times, not receiving acknowledgement receipts from the varsity after mailing answer sheets, tough questions and lengthy question papers. Professor Sanjeev Singh, joint director of Delhi University's Computer Centre, said nearly 32,000 students took the exams on the second day. He said the students might have faced issues in uploading answer sheets during the peak time when the exam time is about to end.

The students had the option of mailing their answer sheets to the varsity. When asked about students claiming that they did not receive acknowledgement mails, he said there might have been a delay of five minutes in sending those emails. The varsity received nearly two lakh answer sheets on the first day. Another official said even if there is delay in receiving the answer sheets after the deadline has ended, the varsity is accepting them.

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