The first day of the new cycle of Delhi University’s Open Book Examination (OBE) kicked off Saturday, with glitches for some groups of students.
After DU conducted its first fully online OBE for final year students in August, with several glitches along the way, the exams are being conducted this time for students who have attended this semester completely online, with teaching-learning having commenced in the online mode after August 10.
The last time the exam was conducted, students had received their question papers both through email and on the university’s exam portal.
Even for submissions, they were permitted either to send their answer sheets through email or upload them to the exam portal. This time students were to only use the university portal in an attempt to streamline the exam process. However, this was disrupted when some students did not receive their questions on the portal Sunday.
Fresh attempt to streamline exam process this time
When the open book exams were conducted in August, students had received their question papers both through email and on the university’s exam portal. They submitted the answer sheets by either uploading them to the exam portal or through email. To streamline the exam process this time, students were to only use the university portal.
A second-year student of BA (Honours) Hindi Journalism and Mass Communication at Bhim Rao Ambedkar College said that he and his classmates did not receive their question papers on the exam portal Saturday.
“We had our radio production paper scheduled for 9.30 am, and we logged on to the portal to find the statement – “there is no exam scheduled for this date” — on it. We waited for 30 minutes and received nothing. Then we directly called our college administration and they sent us our question paper on WhatsApp at 10.13 am. When it was time for us to submit the paper there was still no update on the portal, so we couldn’t submit it there. We mailed our answer sheets to the college in the end,” said the student.
Ashutosh Kumar, nodal officer for the exam at Centre for Vocational Studies, said a set of students in his college also faced a similar problem.
“Students from six different vocational programmes had a common paper today but students of only one programme received the question paper. I must have received around 200 calls from panicked students and parents. Since time was passing by and the portal was not being updated, we arranged for students who had received the common question paper to share it with the others on Whatsapp. Since the submission option on the portal also did not appear for those who did not get their question paper, around 500 students emailed their answer sheets to us. Sorting through all of those is going to be an administrative challenge,” he said.
Dean Examinations D S Rawat said the exam went smoothly despite these issues.
“There were some issues with a few papers because exams with old unique paper codes and new unique paper codes were happening together. The issues were sorted out and the students were given the requisite extra time,” he said.
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