Troubles continued with Delhi University’s online open book examination (OBE) on Friday, with undergraduate students of political science initially receiving the wrong question paper. Students who were not aware of the correct paper being put up later submitted answer scripts for the wrong one.
Students have been receiving question papers in two ways — half an hour before the exam through a link on their email, and at the start of their exam on the DU OBE portal.
At 11 am, BA (Hons) Political Science students received their Modern Political Philosophy paper on their email with the header, ‘Sample Question Paper for Mock Test’. The questions were from a mock test paper they had received earlier.
“There’s always confusion about when to start writing as the question paper comes twice, half an hour apart. We were all surprised when we saw the paper. Our teachers told us to wait for it to be uploaded on the OBE portal. So we waited till 11.30, but the same paper appeared there as well. So we started attempting it. At 12.15 pm, 45 minutes into the exam, I found out through the class WhatsApp group that a different paper had been uploaded on the portal and that was the correct one. We were not alerted to this change via emails; it looks like we are expected to keep checking our phones during the exam. I hurriedly left the first question paper and tried to adapt whatever I had written to the new questions,” said a student of Kalindi College.
Head of DU’s computer centre Sanjeev Singh said this was not a technical error: “I have no idea what went wrong. This was not an error from the technical side. What we upload depends on what is sent to us.” Dean examinations Vinay Gupta did not respond to calls and messages.
While students were given an additional half an hour to complete the exam, some did not find out about the change until it was too late. A student of Hindu College said: “I was concentrating completely on my exam. I finished it at 2.30, scanned my sheets and uploaded them, and only after that did I check WhatsApp and saw messages that a new question paper had been put up. I am extremely tense and in touch with my teachers.”
Nodal officers of different colleges have written to DU asking that the problems be addressed. “The wrong paper had been replaced on the site but it appears students lost time to this and some were not aware. Several colleges have written to authorities about this; I’m sure the matter will be looked into,” said Reetu Sharma, nodal person for OBE at Ramjas College.
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