More than 2,200 NIT-T students demand cancellation of end semester examinations

Submit petition to the college on May 30; those who are unable to take the exam may attempt them when the college reopens, says Director

A section of students from National Institute of Technology (NIT-T), who were unable to take part in online classes, has petitioned the college seeking cancellation of the upcoming end semester examinations.

The institution, meanwhile, maintained that those who were unable to take the online examinations may attempt them when the college reopens.

In a petition submitted on May 30, 2,213 students from various departments of NIT-T said they would be unable to write the end semester examinations scheduled for first, second and third-year students in July.

They cited reasons such as conduct of minimal to no online classes, varying course structures, mental health and erratic internet connectivity.

A second-year student, requesting anonymity, said when the students were asked to leave the campus around March 15, they left in haste and were unable to pick up their course books. Some even left behind their laptops.

“We were told that we would have to return after the 14-day lockdown and so we left behind all our things. Now, most of us are unable to access our coursework,” the student said.

“We are unable to study since our laptops are in college. How will we attend the exams?” he asked.

Although the college permitted students to travel to Tiruchi to pick up the study material, it wasimpossible to travel with lockdown restrictions in place in various parts of the country, another student added.

“Not everyone is emotionally stable in the current crisis - a lot of students are negatively impacted and worried as their internships got rescinded due to the COVID-19. This further impacts the placement and higher education scenarios, which are already uncertain because of the pandemic. Exams, in this case, will only add to our stress levels and increase our mental agonies,” the letter signed by the students said.

As it was a national institute, students came from a wide range of economic and social backgrounds, another student said.

“For example, some are economic pillars for their family, some are worried about their family being stuck, and being unsafe in a different State/country, some have family members who are quarantined, etc. Forcing us to write the exams during this period is unreasonable,” she said.


Although the students claimed that they received no response from the college, NIT-T Director Mini Shaji Thomas, in a letter addressed to parents and students, which is available on the college website, said: “If your wards have any issues with the online assessments, they will get a chance to write it on campus whenever the college reopens, as mentioned in our announcement. So they don’t have to worry if they miss this chance.”

The final assessment was only of 30% weightage for two-hour duration and it would be largely an open book test.

“For internal assessment of 70% weightage, we have allowed for flexibility by giving credit for group work, group projects, seminars, quizzes as suggested by some of you,” she said.

Ms. Thomas also informed the students that the online classes for next semester would start from August 25 and asked them to make necessary arrangements by then.

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Printable version | Jul 15, 2020 2:42:49 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/more-than-2200-nit-t-students-demand-cancellation-of-end-semester-examinations/article31948829.ece

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