Unprecedented? COVID? Abnormal? The year 2020 might be undefinable – and that’s OK. The world after Covid-19 is in uncharted waters. Each one, going through these unprecedented times, shall remember how the world changed and life came to a standstill in all corners of the world. While the transition from offline to online has become the new normal, one industry that took a big hit was education. We were adapting with the topsy-turvy, while the students and college faculty adjusted into the virtual life pretty seamlessly.
Delhi University in the month of August of year 2020, conducted its first ever Open Book Examinations (OBE) for the final year students. Although, after confronting many technical glitches in the online exams, the Delhi University administration put a green signal on the conduction of the Open Book Examinations with the same module for odd semester in December.
Now, after completing two Open Book Examinations, Delhi University has announced the online examinations for the first semester. Freshers who were already coping with the changed structure, a sudden wave of tension has flown in their initial college stage. And the stress has become persistent with less than 30 days left for the examinations to commence. In this last phase of preparation, it is prudent to make strategic plans and remain smart. Here are a few last minute quick fix exam preparation tips for all:
Less Is More
Smart preparation plays a huge role in securing good marks. Cramming all the syllabus right before the exam night wouldn’t do anything good. Follow the strategy of Less Is More. Select the topics which are exam specific, appear frequently and contain more weightage of marks. The previous year question papers will be a smart choice to take help from. Working smart instead of hard is the only rescue here.
Set A Planner
One should have complete knowledge about the syllabus and the exam pattern. Setting up a planner comes handy afterwards. It is imperative to figure out which topics need more time, which subject is to be allocated how many days and how many days is to be defined for revisions. In addition, while setting up a calendar, there should be enough space for other refreshing activities that include playing, exercise, sports etc.
Be Thorough With The Books
The OBEs’ are generally pre-assumed to be something like a comprehensive test but in reality, it is not possible to interpret the questions, swipe over a 100 pages, and then write the correct answer within the limited time. Thus, reading the texts is imperative. Also, highlighting the important parts is also recommended. Just because it is an open book exam, it doesn’t mean it does not require the same preparation.
Do Not Panic
Stressing over the exams will not help you get good grades, instead add to anxiety. Students have negative thoughts about failing, not getting good marks etc right before the exam but you need to understand that rather than being negative, the positive thoughts will boost up your motivation and will help you pass your exams with flying colors. Have confidence, relax yourself and write your exam from the quietest place of your home.
Moreover, it is a common tendency among the students to not eat well because of the exam stress. But, always remember an old saying, ‘Healthy mind lives in a healthy body’. If you are healthy and eat healthy, there is a greater chance of grasping the things quickly. Periodic exercise and yoga sessions are effective in refreshing a mind and thereby increasing the concentration level.
The blended open-book examinations that were conducted in previous year were marred with glitches and problems with results. However, Delhi University announced online exams for the batch of Freshers in the month of March this year. Delhi University claims to be prepared this time to conduct a smooth examination.
The students are in a dilemma as to how to get started, therefore here’s a list of things to look out for while preparing yourself for the online exam.
All the answers have to be written in A4 size sheets. The paper can be ruled or unruled however, the usage of only blue and black is allowed.
In Delhi University’s website there is a students’ portal for conduction of OBE. You will have to register yourself in the portal. Fill all the details asked i.e your name, enrolment number, name of the program, date of birth, examination roll number, and the registered mobile number and email ID. Make sure that the details are accurate.
After filling all the details, you will receive an OTP (One Time Password) on the registered mobile number or email. You will get the password. Save the login details for further use and appear in the mock tests.
On the day of examination, login in the examination portal at least 30 minutes prior to commencement of the exam to avoid online traffic jam.
After logging in, you will see a clock on the screen which will indicate the time left for downloading the question paper.
At the beginning of the examination, you must read all the instructions that are written very carefully. This will help you to avoid any mistake.
At the beginning of the examination, the question paper download button will be visible. At the commencement of a particular session of examination as per the date sheet released by DU, the question paper will be released.
When the time comes, there will be a download button to download the question paper on desktop/mobile phone.
Unfortunately, if you are not able to download the question paper due to technical glitches, then you must contact your college staff immediately. The question paper will be directly sent to your email address, phone number or WhatsApp by the college. However, this step should be followed only in extreme cases and emergencies.
As soon as you download the question paper, your screen will show you the time left for completion of the examination.
A total of four hours (except for physically disable students who will get 6 hours) to complete the exam. Three hours are given for writing the answers and an additional hour is given for technical work like download of question paper and submission of answer sheet. You are required to submit the answer sheets within the stipulated time.
You need to use separate sheets for each new answer (for smooth evaluation). In the front sheet of each answer you are required to write your details like your name, semester, program name, examination roll number, paper title, unique paper code, date, and time of examination.
Written pages of the scanned answers should be uploaded question-wise by the students in a single file and should be uploaded question-wise, once the examination is complete. To upload, select the tab “Upload Answers”. No further changes can be made once the answer sheets are uploaded.
If you are not able to upload the answer sheets on the portal, then you have to send your scanned sheets to the email address of Nodal officer of your college within the time stipulated along with proof. However, this step should be followed only in case of emergency.
A declaration will be required by UFM before you submit the answers. Once, you have declared the UFM, verified the answer scripts, and submitted, you can log out from the portal.
Once you have successfully submitted your answer sheet, you will receive a confirmation on your registered mobile number and email address.
So, with the above mentioned step-by-step guide, you will be able to appear in the DU OBE exam successfully.
Thumb Rules During Online Examinations
The online examinations can sound frustrating and you could exhaust yourself if you don’t prepare. You will be taking the exams from the comfort of your home thus, you need to prepare a little bit more. You need to take care of your ambience and concentration level.
If you want to ace this open book examination, then below are some thumb rules that will help you.
▪︎ Stay away from distractions during the exam. Find a quiet and pleasant room for yourself, so that nobody can disturb you. This will not break the concentration level.
▪︎ Writing a three-hour paper could be a tiresome activity. To kick out the laziness inside you, get a table and a chair and sit in a comfortable position along with an adequate amount of light. This will help you to write the paper easily.
▪︎ The most important thing in the online examinations is a stable internet/WiFi connection. Alongside, you will need a good working laptop/computer/smart phone to ensure smooth completion of the exams.
▪︎ Keep all the essentials within your reach. A clock, ample amount of A4 size sheets, admit card, pen, books, notes, and other materials.
▪︎ Write your details and number the answer sheets a day before exam. Doing so will eliminate the hustle bustle and save a lot of time during the exam.
▪︎ Keeping yourself hydrated is important. Drinking water frequently and sitting near a window will supply oxygen and fresh air. This will help you to concentrate and write well.
A lot of confusion may be going on right now in your mind. It is obvious because it will be the first time that you will sit for an online exam.
To get familiar with the process, it is recommended to take the mock exams before the semester exams. The mock exams are usually available one week prior to the commencement of the real examinations. This will make the students aware about the process and method of online examinations.
As the Covid-19 struck, it upended the colleges, putting a question mark on the career plans of hundreds of thousands of students. However, Delhi University managing the situation, conducted the first ever online examinations so that education is not shelved. Tackling the technical glitches and problems, one can only hope for trouble-free management during the OBE.