IIT Bhubaneswar students oppose online end semester exam

IIT Bhubaneswar students oppose online end semester exam Picture used for representational purpose only (Source: Shutterstock)
Team Careers360 | Jun 4, 2020 - 12:59 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: Indian Institute of Technology-Bhubaneswar is gearing up to conduct online exams when a majority of final year students are unable to arrange for laptops and internet.

Around 65 percent of the students are incapable of arranging for the required equipment, a student survey revealed. The survey was conducted after the institute held a mock exam to test the viability of a software application in March. Its findings were conveyed to the administration.

To appear for the online examination, students are required to arrange for two smartphones and a laptop with an internet connection. Further, a software application-Wheebox which has to be installed to write the online exam.

Despite the students’ objection after the mock examination, the institute has decided to conduct the examination on June 24. The students are now demanding an alternative mode of evaluation for the graduating students.

“Most of the students I know belong to poor families. Their parents work as daily wagers who do not have rich friends who can lend laptops and smartphones for the exam,” said an IIT-Bhubaneswar student on condition of anonymity. “Many are studying under scholarship programs meant for economically disadvantaged students,” he added.

The students are also protesting against conducting the online exam on social media.

Jobs at risk

Students who are unable to appear for the exam this month have been given an option to appear for the offline exam in August. However, the delay will jeopardize the placement of many final year students.

During the lockdown period, several companies are conducting virtual onboarding of new employees.

“Companies want us to join right away but if we are not able to appear for the exam in June, our graduation will be delayed. The companies may also revoke our job offers,” the final year student said. “The families of poor students are dependent on them,” he added.

Since a lot of the students are also unable to travel for the offline exams, the students are demanding to either cancel the exams or evaluate the students based on their past semester performance.

Later, the registrar of IIT-Bhubaneswar alleged the problems publicised by some students of IIT-Bhubaneshwar were an exercise “aimed at defaming the image of the institute”. Apparently, according to the institute, fake accounts were created to post malicious content.

The institute further informed Careers360, that all decisions are taken with "a high degree of transparency, integrity and standards".

Meanwhile, other IITs in Bombay, Roorkee, Kanpur and Kharagpur have cancelled the final year exam for students. The students in these institutes will be promoted based on their grade points for timely graduation.

Update: This copy has been updated to include IIT Bhubaneswar's rejoinder.

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