St Xavier’s University will allow students who don’t have computers or sound Net connectivity in their homes to write their semester exams on the campus using the university’s computer facilities.
The online second and fourth semester exams for undergraduate students and second semester for postgraduate students will be held from December 7 to 11.
Since some students don’t have computers at home or access to proper Net connectivity because of financial constraints or any other reason, they will be allowed to take the online exams on the campus, Father Felix Raj, the university vice-chancellor, said.
“We cannot expect all students to have computers at their homes. Somemay lack robust connectivity and that can come in the way of writing tests online. They will be allowed to write the test on the campus. In any university, students come first,” he said. “They are the primary stakeholders. The university should be at their service.”
A notification signed by the acting controller of examination said those who wanted to take the exams on the campus needed to send a mail to email@example.com, mentioning their name, course, roll number and registration number. The subject will be “Request for giving examinations on the university campus”.
The applications will be verified and approved with certain conditions by the competent authority, according to the notice. All provisions are applicable as a one-time measure and cannot be cited as a precedent in future.
The university will send its buses to pick up students from their homes and bring them to the campus as they don’t want students to use public transport during the pandemic, the vice-chancellor said.
A university official said the university had surveyed students and found some had Net connectivity problems.
This prompted the university to allow students to take the exams on the campus.
A similar survey at the India Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, Shibpur, had shown 15.5 per cent of 1,830 students could not attend online classes in the last semester and that 18.3 per cent faced Net connectivity problems at home, an institute official said.
St Xavier’s has always thought about disadvantaged students whose condition have worsened during the pandemic and in July had decided to offer a 20 per cent concession on semester fees to all undergraduate and postgraduate students for the next six months, a university official said.
Last month, some undergraduate students of Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose College in Calcutta had dropped the plan of uploading their final-year answer scripts from their homes because of Net connectivity problems and had opted for a pen-and-paper test on the campus.