45pc DU students don’t want online exam, finds survey
Around 45 percent students of Dhaka University don't want to take part in online exams because of network issues, lack of proper devices, and unfavourable domestic environment, a recent survey has revealed.
Of the rest, 52.7 percent of participating students stated they are willing to attend the exams while the others said they aren't sure yet.
The Social Science Research Team of Dhaka University Research Society (DURS) conducted the survey. Conducted online from June 1 to June 15, a total of 3,730 students participated in the survey.
Meanwhile, those who are willing to take part in online exams said they don't want to take part in live video exams, the preferred method according to a recent DU guideline.
According to the exam guidelines, the university wants to hold its exams through live videos, which very few participants were interested in. Only 4.2 percent of students said they want to take part in such exams.
Meanwhile, 87.4 percent students preferred assignment-based exams, while other preferences included open book exam (21.1 percent), MCQ (19.6 percent), and short quiz (19.4 percent).
Tawhida Jahan, chairperson of the Communication Disorders department told The Daily Star, "The survey found that students want to attend the test by submitting assignments, but DU administration is not positive in this regard. They think it'll be difficult to assess students' merit through assignments."
"But given the students' inconveniences, they ought to reconsider," she added.
Among the respondents, 44.5 percent said they are currently residing in rural areas, 15.7 percent in small city areas, 19.3 percent in cities, and 20.5 percent are from metropolitan city areas. All of them are from different faculties and institutes of the university.
56.4 percent of those who said they're unwilling to take part in online tests put unstable internet connections in their rural households as the key reason.
36.1 percent also attributed power-supply failures, while 45.7 cited inconvenient environment at home. 22.2 percent blamed their lack of necessary digital devices while 16.6 percent cited their inability to afford such devices or mobile data.
Of them, 52.3 percent of students said they want to take part in in-person exams and 16.1 percent supported auto-promotion.
85 percent of the respondents said they took part in online classes by using mobile phones, 64 percent of whom used mobile data. Among them, 26.4 percent applied to get a device or financial assistance from the university, but didn't get any. Only 3.4 percent said they had availed the aid.
Contacted, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Education) of DU Prof Dr ASM Maksud Kamal told The Daily Star, "We have readied the specific guidelines for taking online exams online. We told the departments to address the students' inconveniences and resolve them."
Meanwhile, DU Vice-Chancellor Prof Md Akhtaruzzaman told The Daily Star, "We have lots of limitations but there is no option but to hold online examinations."
"We have recommended different methods for the exams. Teachers can choose a method which fits their students' needs," he said.
The VC and Pro-VC didn't make any comments on the financial help issue. The Pro-VC said he didn't know any update while the VC said the university's accounts department is handling the issue.
ONLINE CLASS EXPERIENCE
Surveying students' experience of online classes, it also found that the academic syllabus of 53.7 percent of participants was incomplete.
Only 2.7 percent of the students said they are satisfied with the classes whereas 46.7 percent of them are highly dissatisfied.
On the other hand, 23.9 percent of the students said they are "satisfied" while only 2.8 percent were "fully satisfied" with their online classes.
DURS conducted the research under the supervision of Professor Muhammad Manjurul Karim of Microbiology department and Tawhida Jahan, chairperson of the Communication Disorders department.
Muhammad Tanbirul Islam, Sumaiya Imtiaz, Md Atikuzzaman, Jawad Shams, Ragib Anjum, Sumaiya Ahmed, Omar Farukh and more also worked behind the survey.