TN Colleges: Technical Glitches Plague Day-1 of Online Final Year Exams
Tamil Nadu: Students reported technical glitches in the online final semester examination for engineering and art programs, conducted by universities of Tamil Nadu.
Connectivity woes, log-in issues, page loading trouble and inability to seek technical help were some of the difficulties that marred the first day of online exams held across the state-run colleges in Tamil Nadu.
Exams have been conducted for state-run universities of Tamil Nadu from 21 September onwards. Anna University conducted its online examination on 22 September. During the examination, students reported issues and errors in the examination system of the university.
University of Madras students challenged by tech-snags
The University of Madras started its online open book examination for final year students from 21 September to 25 September 2020.
More than 60,000 students appeared for the Final Semester examination conducted by the University of Madras from 21 September to 25 September. During the mock test, almost 25 lakh students were recorded on the varsity website.
Students complained of facing several glitches during the examination. Students were unable to download question papers despite repeated attempts.
Referring to the issues, a student from Chepauk campus of Madras University, said: "I tried downloading the question paper for nearly two hours. I kept switching between different devices available before I was finally able to download it".
Students were asked to download the question paper provided by the university and upload the scanned copy of their answer sheet at the end of the examination. Candidates failed to do so due to technical glitches in the examination.
The controller of the examination, K Pandian said: "All students were given contacts of nodal officers across the state in case they faced trouble during the exam. Alternate arrangements have been made for students with such issues".
K Pandian stated that the authority delivered question paper to students who were unable to download the question paper and were facing technical glitches by other means.
He added "Students who do not have the required technology were asked to send the answer scripts via post. We also assisted students by sending them the question paper on Whatsapp if they were unable to download it".
Bharathiar University, Coimbatore examination issues faced by students
During the mock test conducted by Bharathiar University on September 16, many university students faced glitches during the test. The university has taken initiatives to look into the matter and to follow an examination model similar to the University of Madras.
Students were requested to log-in to the examination panel by 09:45 am and download their exam question paper by 10:00 am. Due to the serval issues, many students were unable to do so by 11:00 am.
A student from Bharathiar University stated that some issues have not been addressed by the university. The students who are living in containment ones in other states are unable to post the answer sheet on time.
Some university students are facing issues in converting their scanned photograph in the required jpeg format.
Post offices close by the time students upload the answer sheets, making it hard for them to go for another option if they won't be able to upload answer sheets on the examination portal of the website, he added
Addressing the issue, the varsity decided to extend the time by half for downloading the question papers and uploading the answer sheet.
On 21 September 2020, VC P Kaliraj stated that 96.16% out of 30393 students wrote the exams. The remaining students who faced issues during the exam received revised question papers from the university.
Anna University Mock Test Glitches
Students of Anna University faced issues like failed log-in attempts and being blocked during the mock test held by the university on 22 September.
The semester examination is scheduled to be held from 22 September to 29 September while the mock test was held by the university on 18 September via online mode.
Later, due to several issues reported by the students during the mock test, the university held another mock test on 19 September.
Many students who faced the issues asked the varsity how the university will conduct a final examination if the mock test has so many glitches via social media platforms. Students were unable to find help through the student helpline set up by the university.
Referring to the issue, the varsity asserted that students would not be failed due to technical errors or glitches from the university side. The glitches found in the mock test will be fixed for the main examination.
A final year student said "When I tried to log in, the website said that my login was blocked because maximum allowed login attempts were exceeded. I could not take up the mock test.
While another student added that he could not log-in for 10 minutes after the test began. He said, "After I logged in finally, I automatically got logged out within 10 minutes again. I do not know how the final exam will be".
Many students faced different error message pop-ups before they could finally start their examination. Students who entered wrong log-in details were blocked after log-in attempts.
A Student of Anna university who was unable to log-in for 20 minutes said, "I tried reaching the helpline number in vain. Nobody answered the call".
The news reports could not reach the controller of Anna University examination, MR M. Venkatesan for answers. The Vice-Chancellor MK scrapped said that varsity has taken control of the situation and various glitches faced by the students have been looked into.
He added, "The helpline will definitely be accessible to students during the exams. I assure you that. Students also have to be careful about entering the right credentials so that they don't get blocked".
DMK Leader Mr MK Stalin stated in a statement on 21 September that the university will ensure a smooth examination experience for university students.