Unable to Fill Online Forms, DU Students Hope Against Online Exams

Several DU students say they have been unable to fill or even access the examination form online.

3 min read
Several DU students say they have been unable to fill or even access the examination form online.

Over 2,000 kilometres away from the national capital, Raisha has been trying to fill up an examination form, without much success. The second-year History student from Hindu College in the University of Delhi’s (DU) North Campus, is one among many who are now struggling to fill up the university’s semester examination form online.

But the slow-to-load examination form, which students must fill online by 15 May, isn’t the only thing that is keeping them worried.

Many now fear that a combined assault of slow internet, lack of laptops and a weak university server may prevent them from sitting for online exams, should the university decide to conduct semester exams over the internet.

While DU hasn’t officially mentioned when and how these semester exams would be held, multiple reports have suggested that the central varsity is exploring options to conduct semester exams online. The exams, reports say, will be held between the months of May and June, but so far no official date has been announced.

“I have been trying to fill the form since yesterday, but without much success. If online exams take place and this is the condition, how will we be able to take them?”
Raisha, Second-year Student, DU

Having left her family’s only laptop back in Delhi, she worries who will give her a laptop if DU decides to conduct exams online.

Un-formed: From Panipat to Bhagalpur

From a village near Haryana’s Panipat, Sweety has tried to fill up the form on her mobile over six times in the last 24 hours. Each time she clicks on the submit button, the “form goes blank and details have to be filled again.”

With no laptop at home, the student from DU’s Laxmibai College has been relying on her smartphone to access the limited online classes that her college has offered. With reports of online exams doing the rounds, she, too, is worried about slow internet connectivity.

“If exams are held online, it will create a lot of problems. The network here is really not reliable and stops working quite frequently. I don’t have a laptop at home and I can’t even afford one at this moment. How will I write online exams on phone, that too, which such connectivity?”
Sweety, Student, DU

Shazia (name changed) another first-year DU student, who has gone back to her village in Bihar’s Bhagalpur says that she has not been able to access online classes in the first place, leave alone filling the online form.

“The connectivity is so bad that the page for the form is not opening. Even online classes stop streaming in between,”says the 20-year-old, who only has a smartphone and no laptop.

When asked what will happen if the university decides to go ahead with online exams, Shazia says “even if I manage a laptop, I won’t be able to type so fast during the exam. My future will be in jeopardy and I will have to carry the academic burden of both first and second year.”

But the biggest fear for Shazia, isn’t coronavirus. “If I am not able to study, I might have to stay at home...get married. This is creating more pressure on me than coronavirus,” she says.

Students in Delhi Unsure of Online Exams

But the possibility of online exams is not just a source of worry for those in the hinterland. Like others, North Delhi resident Sandhya has been unable to fill the form herself and has had to rely on one of her batchmates. She doesn’t have a laptop and relies on her father’s smartphone to access online classes.

“I am a student of Hindi medium and am not too familiar with the Hindi keyboard on the computer. How will I type in an online exam? is this my fault?”

When asked if her family can afford a new laptop, Sandhya retorts “if we had the money, wouldn’t I buy a smartphone first? Why would I use a keypad phone?”

Having to rely on her father’s phone after he returns from work in the evening, Sandhya is not sure about how she will sit for an online exam if the university so decides.

(Repeated calls and messages to Dean, Admissions, DU, did not elicit a response. This article will be updated as and when a comment is received from his office.)

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