After eleven weeks of resumption, the University of Ibadan has not yet disclosed how the first semester examinations for the 2020/2021 session would be conducted or when it would start. This calls for worry and it is pertinent to draw the University’s attention to it.
Just as the students of the University of Ibadan have, for months, been crying out against the uncomfortable nature of the virtual learning experience, we are also not pleased on the silence of the University and we hope that very soon it will feed the students on the conduct of the First semester examinations.
Before May 2021, students have rigorously been through head-cracking zoom classes where lecturers rush through the classes with the selfish goal of finishing the course outlines and also with the heartbreaking news of assignments at the end of every class. Many of them have unwillingly accepted the dark fate of the virtual learning experience despite the high hope we once had in it. Also, many students of the University of Ibadan now resort to very intense personal reading and researches to make up for the loopholes of virtual classes.
It is extremely unfortunate that the reality of the virtual learning experience reveals that the university authorities have failed to deliver the best as its mantra says. Even though we applaud the University for its bravery in adopting new challenges, we also detest the results we have got as they have only put the students at greater academic risk since the resumption of this session especially with the fear of how they would fare in the examination. For this, we duly desire that we would be meritoriously compensated for the burden of the virtual classes that we reluctantly carried.
To our lecturers, we appreciate the assignments given to grade us in this virtual semester. While they may not be the proper test of knowledge, we implore that as we prepare for their examinations, tutorials, class discussions and rewarding revisions should be conducted as they would go a long way. As students are already preparing and reading harder for the examination due to the disadvantages the virtual semester posed, we implore our lecturers to also reduce how students are bombarded with assignments and allow them substantial time to process what they have learnt, read more and prepare harder for the examination. At the University of Ibadan, we know the interests of the students comes first, so we are confident this would be considered.
For faculties and department, in structuring the exam timetable, kindly put the following into consideration: that the virtual classes have not been pleasurable so it didn’t fulfil its objectives, assignments were mostly given which are not the proper test of knowledge and students will still rely on weeks of rigorous personal reading and assessment. As a result, we would appreciate a timetable that put these into consideration and not one in which all the exams would be rushed in a week.
Moving on, we also pray that the university community, by the end of this week, releases an official statement on the date for examinations and how it would be achieved. For the second plea, we further ask that the examination will be conducted physically. Having tasted how bitter the virtual classes are, we also can guess how the virtual examination might taste which won’t be a pleasurable experience.
If the University heeds to our request for physical examinations, we further request that the it would make halls of residence available while observing the Covid-19 protocols so that students can observe the physical examination enjoyably and comfortably.
However, if the school decides to conduct virtual examinations, we sincerely wish that they would consider and pay attention to everything necessary in ensuring that the virtual exams will complement the not-so-good virtual learning experience. Even at that, we sincerely hope that virtual examination will not be considered.
In conclusion, we await an official statement from the university community and we hope all our requests will be part of what we would hear.