Recommendations by UGC’s Expert Committee surface differing concerns. A fraction of students desire abrogation of examinations amid the Pandemic scare; while some urge preponement of examinations.

On 27th April 2020, an Expert Committee, headed by Professor R.C. Kuhad, was constituted by the University Grants Commission (UGC) in view of the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown to delve into the issues related Examinations and the Academic Calendar to avoid academic loss and  take appropriate measures for the future of students. Although an advisory in nature, the suggestions have sparked varying concerns.

One of the suggestions put forth by the committee was- conducting examinations for students (who have terminal semester) in July. This proposition has turned out to be a cause of concern. Some students at University of Delhi have, in turn, appealed to the UGC, to conduct the final semester exams in May instead of July as the delay would render negative consequences for students who were supposed to start working from July 2020; given that several companies may give preference to students from other colleges who have already written their exams.
“It [delay] is causing a lot of mental distress because a lot of MNCs will revoke job offers for those who will not be able to get their provisional degrees by July,” said a PG student who wished to remain anonymous.

On the other hand students have also stated their concerns about conducting examinations amid the pandemic scare. A message circulated in the WhatsApp groups of one the colleges affiliated to the University of Delhi which raised similar concerns and have started an initiative to a write letter to the concerned authorities-
“To say that we have been shaken by the circumstances around us would be an understatement. The given circumstances add to the social, academic, and professional pressure being faced by each one of us. Amidst this, the idea of sitting for examinations is scary. Therefore, being the primary stakeholders, we are writing to the UGC, University of Delhi, and the HRD ministry, asking them to cancel our examinations.”

The letter also furnished alternatives such as changes in the pattern of evaluation such as constitute 50% of students’ marks, with the remainder 50% marks being derived from the students’ previous 5 batches of examinations. Alternatively, following the 25-75 marks ratio followed by Delhi University, derivation of 25% marks from the Internal Assessment conducted in the current academic year (2019-20), and the rest 75% marks represented by an average of the theory examinations attempted by the students in previous semesters. Thirdly, 10% increase in the average marks being derived from previous theory examinations. Fourthly, degrees awarded to final year students must necessarily display the fact that students underwent an interrupted final semester/year due to a global pandemic. Lastly, final year students should still have access to improvement examinations in the foreseeable future for their respective subjects.

The committee’s output is not final and binding hence, further developments and conclusions on the matter are awaited.

Featured Image Credits: DU Beat Archives

Priyanshi Banerjee

[email protected]

Following the suite of many other institutions, the Delhi University (DU) is considering the forfeiture of semester exams and discussing direct promotions. Read on to find out.

Senior University officials recently had a video conference with DU Vice Chancellor, Mr. Yogesh Tyagi. Various issues ranging from admissions to examinations were discussed. During the meeting two proposals were made by the officials to the Vice Chancellor. These included declaration of a summer vacation from 15th April to 15th May, so that the next session, i.e. 2020-21, can start in time. The other proposals recommended promoting 1st and 2nd year students without conducting semester examinations. 

The officials said that among the students, freshers or first year students have the largest population followed by second year students. As conducting the examinations of all the students is difficult, so the first and second year students can be passed on the basis of promotions or on the basis of prior evaluations. If these steps are followed, it will not be a big challenge for the administration to conduct the examination of third year students.

This, however, is subject to the approval of the Vice Chancellor. These suggestions have come from discussions and deliberations between senior officials as well as professors of the varsity, but the final decision has to be taken by the VC. Thus only the passage of time will clear this fog over DU examinations for students who already are struggling to keep up with the online classes and assignments.

DU has postponed the application process for M.Phil. and Ph.D., including graduates, masters, starting in the first week of April in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to this, DU has also postponed the School of Open Learning, regular college and non-collegiate women’s board examinations until further notice.

IIT Mumbai and IIT Kharagpur have declared summer vacation after their lockdown due to corona. Apart from this prominent institutions like Aligarh Muslim University, Gujarat Technological University, Chaudhary Charan Singh University, Rajasthan University and Central University of Kashmir, either postponed or put the examinations on hold.

Additionally, Symbiosis International (Deemed University) has cancelled all of its exams citing the coronavirus pandemic.

Various entrance examinations like National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET), Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), Services Selection Board (SSB) and Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) have also been postponed or put on hold.

With inputs from Hindustan Dainik.

Featured Image Credits: DU Beat Archives

Aniket Singh Chauhan

[email protected]


Think about your favourite teacher, first best friend, first crush, sharing tiffin boxes, the class getting up and chanting “good morning teacher”, bells ringing and copies closing in unison. Nostalgic, right? 

School inevitably leads one to “memory avenue” where one cannot help but wander. With the Semester-End Examination bidding farewell, the WhatsApp groups flood with reunion plans. But there exists a bitter side, a side that is an underlying decay, decay that cannot be ignored.

School instils fear in the hearts of students. The adrenalin rush at the fear of not knowing an answer turns out to be a baseless tremor, as one looks back at past. Eventually, this fear becomes a part of one’s system and the default setting of thinking more and speaking fewer sets in. How many times did you know the answer, had a doubt or an opinion but could not raise your hand? Did this resurface in your adulthood? Let that thought sink in…..

“I remember I was in seventh when our teachers segregated us on the basis of the length of our kurtas. We were very young hence, we actually started feeling guilty.”

The length of a kurta, the length of a skirt, the magnitude of the narrowness of one’s pants, the crime of rolling up one’s sleeves seem to be the only parameters which exist to judge students and categorize them into “good” and “undisciplined”. This plight continues like the not-so-famous process of “unnatural selection”, we assume that Darwin hangs his head down at the thought of it. The stages of categorization continue till an alpha being is found who is used as the ideal specimen to which others are advised to “look up to”. “Look at him, try to be like him” they say. Eventually, one tries to follow, as a result, the coping mechanism changes to copying mechanism and a school changes into a mass production unit.

The garden never claimed the roses to be the most beautiful. The flowerpots never told the periwinkles to be like lilies, the soil never told the weed to act like grass.

Students learn to follow, follow their teachers, follow elders, and follow what the book says. No one teaches the act of resistance, the act of questioning is a forbidden fact because apparently, questions do not come as six markers in papers. They never let one ask why but expect an explanation in your diary note.

Schools hollow out the capacity to have opinions. The glass is always half full and schools half-heartedly open horizons to fit in critical thinking. Agitation and resistance are Greek words until one enters college, where every voice matters, where every act of dissent is not reduced to rootless rebellion. 

“I’d be concerned about a behaviour policy that focuses on punishing students for what they are getting wrong rather than asking the broader question of why they are behaving in a particular way. Our school’s motto is “live adventurously”…… we encourage individuals to think for themselves and explore and question- that’s fundamental to education”, Iain Kilpatrick, head-teacher, Sidcot School, Somerset.

A democratic classroom is a farfetched dream which only some seem to savour. A place where questions are asked, opinions are accepted and sticks are spared is much due. The existing training for slavery should be replaced by the empowerment of future leaders. Dawn is yet to come.

Feature Image Credits: Gyanarjun Saroj for DU Beat

Priyanshi Banerjee

[email protected]


The introduction of the FYUP is probably the biggest reform undertaken by the University in a long time. One would like to believe that a change so mighty will be properly planned out. Alas, we all know that this hasn’t been the case.

One of the less talked about issues with the new system is the huge increase in the weightage given to Internal Assessments or IA. Previously, each subject, other than the ones requiring practical examinations, was allotted 25 marks as IA. The pattern was loosely the same across colleges, and consisted of assignments, class tests, presentations and attendance.

While this still remains true for the Discipline Courses, the Foundation Course teachers have been given the freedom, (or burden?) of allotting 55 marks on their own. The actual ‘exam’ in this case, which is for 20 marks, is little more than a joke, and also checked internally i.e. by the teachers of the respective colleges. To put it in perspective, 270 out of 500 marks now lie solely with your teachers. This translates to 54% of your overall grade and 73.3% of your FC marks which depend more on your luck than on your learning abilities.

Am I blaming ‘luck’ only because I’m a sore loser? Well let’s think about this, the average IA scores vary drastically not just from college to college, but also from teacher to teacher. Whereas some colleges have adopted the method of assessing their students fairly and awarding marks with restraint, others are making full use of the opportunity to help their students score much better. Have you and your classmates been given a perfect 55 even in subjects like Hindi and English? Were you taken aback at how high you’ve scored even in subjects and classes you barely attended?

A situation which places nearly 3/4th of your FC score in the teacher’s hands is bound to promote favoritism and bias. Students find themselves losing out on marks in group discussions that never happened and extra credits they weren’t informed about. Even the teachers had come out against this shift in mark distribution, calling it the University’s way of washing its hands off tedious work.

Sports and ECA students are awarded grace marks in Foundation Courses, but even that has no fixed guidelines. Some colleges just add 8 marks for each FC and some mark the student on his or her actual performance in the said extra-curricular activity.

The CCE reform that the CBSE Board had introduced in secondary school education faced similar criticism. Internal Assessment should definitely be a part of a student’s evaluation, but is 55 marks under the same really justified? Especially when classes might not even be held, and there are Professors who aren’t able to recall a student’s name, let alone his or her performance in class? It’s indeed sad how under the new system, being a sincere student doesn’t count for much, but being a sweet talker sure does.

And they are back – the exams! It’s that part of the year when most students abandon (or surrender!) their gadgets & vow to stay away from these tempting-yet-malicious devices! After all it’s exam time! While that’s quite an acceptable viewpoint, what I say is, why lose it when you can use it? We present some apps (Free)  for your smartphones, which will help you in preparing for your exams this semester and study smarter!


Hate learning those lengthy answers?  Well, let’s simplify things a bit!

SimpleMind introduces an innovative way of learning. The app allows you to create colorful mind maps. A mind map is a diagram used to visually outline information.  You can create colorful  spider diagram which make things easier to learn and subsequently, easier to remember. The diagrams organize lengthy answers by providing a structure, and make concepts clearer to understand & simple to memorize!   The app is also very effective for revisions!


A paid version with extended functionality is also available.

The Android / iOS app can be downloaded for Free from www.simpleapps.eu/simplemind

Self Control for Study

You are sitting with your textbook in hand, all psyched up, giving your full attention.  And your BFF just pinged you on WhatsApp!  It’s almost impossible to resist!  You check it out, have a brief conversation with your friend and notice – You wasted a hell lot of time! Sounds Familiar?

To save you from such distractions SelfControl allows you to block certain apps & websites for a set amount of time. This allows you to fully concentrate on your studies in an uninterrupted manner. However, what makes it more special is the fact that, once blocked, it’s impossible for you to access these apps until the specified time runs runs out!  It doesn’t allow you to unblock these apps -even if you desperately uninstall this application!

Hardcore, isn’t it? But it works!  It’ll help you (as it did for me) realize the amount of time we gain if we aren’t interrupted sporadically! Though the app is not in English, it’s quite user friendly.


Self Control is available on Android for Free

Better Me

For most of us getting up is the most difficult challenge we need to overcome daily in order to study religiously for the exams. Are you conscious about your image in the virtual space? Better Me seeks to discipline you by threatening to ridicule you in on the leading social networks! You can set up alarms for various tasks and set the days of the week you would like to be reminded on. When the alarm rings, you may either snooze it or complete the task you had set up for yourself (waking up in my case!.  If you choose to snooze, the app posts on your Facebook wall a humiliating message calling you weak willed and not being able to fulfil your task! Trust me you, once this happens, you will never (ever!) fail at any task you set up on the app! It’s embarrassing!


Better Me is available for both Android & iOS on www.bettermeapp.co


Stop pasting those sticky notes everywhere around your house! Making chits or Flashcards is a tried & tested way to remember some key points. It also is a great way to revise. StudyBlue is a virtual learning tool which allows you to create flashcards for an efficient and effective revision. Further, it allows you to embed pictures, texts, and recorded speech.  With SyudyBlue, you can study whenever and wherever you want. A paid version of the app is also available with added features.


The app is available on Android & iOS as well as on the web.

Schedule Planner By Intersog

Planning is the first step towards success… As the name suggests, Schedule planner allows you to create an agenda for the day, more so like a timetable. You can add various categories like education, health, meal, etc. What makes it unique is the fact that it allows you to see the actual amount of time you spend doing the tasks you had planned in a colorful pie diagram. It tells you much percentage of your time is consumed by what task!  A paid Pro version is available with more features!


An easy to use & extreme intuitive app, it’s available on Android & iOS

Now you are well equipped to face the exams & prepare efficiently, make the most of them!  All the best!  ^-^


Sidhant Malhotra

[email protected]


Delhi University has released the examination schedule for semester exams scheduled in May 2014 for second and third year students of most courses. The announcement comes 20 days after the University released the initial date sheet for first year students of the Four Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP). According to the same, examinations begin on 5th May, 2014. The date sheet also lists Sem-II examinations for students who have previous ERs in the subjects and need to clear the same.

Students can check the date sheet here.

Results are possibly the most unnerving concept in a student’s life. As the fresh batch of Delhi University students awaited their results, many believed that like the first batch of the semester system saw an exponential hike in marks in their first university exam, this new batch would undergo a similar fate. Another effort by the University to show us all how right they were to introduce the Four Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP), and how all the dharnas, strikes, protest marches against the FYUP were completely baseless. And as luck would have it, they were not proven wrong. Scores touched the sky, and many of those who didn’t even write the papers got 50% marks.

As someone who believes very firmly that marks are no measure of a person’s caliber, intellect and heart, my problems with the generous marking is that our administration needs to justify its bad decisions. Proven eloquently by many, and multiple times, it is not something that can be solved by being stingy and ruthless, but possibly by some introspection that University officials, teachers, students and even the HRD ministry could all benefit from.

Simply put, it’s not so much about the marks as it is about the intentions. Intentions to make an entire batch of the student community silent, content with the half baked knowledge they’re gaining about subjects that don’t interest them and are poorly structured; intentions to silence all teachers who have been courageously speaking out against the ruin of the University, sometimes even risking their jobs; intentions to give the fore bearers of the FYUP a pat on the back for having achieved what the University has never achieved before – sky high marks, leading to polished CVs, which in turn, lead to the biggest argument made for the FYUP – ‘employability’.

Assuming this employability will actually exist, what would it be worth if it means employing someone whose result sheet speaks far more than the concepts they learnt? Or if it comes at the cost of being made to study a subject you have absolutely no interest in? Would this employability be worth an unhappy four years, made tolerable by marks one probably doesn’t deserve, making those who deserve these scores feel mediocre? Isn’t the price we’re paying for this (assumed) employability far too high?

Having learnt so much from Delhi University, I’m writing this in the hope that the FYUP doesn’t take this learning away from those who’ve just made the transition from school to college – a transition that isn’t easy, to say the least. And to top that, when all your dreams of studying and learning what you really want to, studying it well, having the time to soak the concepts into your mind, body and heart (which would be far more ‘integrated’ without the FYUP!) are shattered, only to console you with marks that you didn’t expect, the University becomes a mere sham. I hope these scores don’t silence us, and I hope we continue to stand up for learning, education and character.

Delhi University has declared the Sem V results of the examinations conducted in November-December 2013 for 24 courses. These include most arts courses including Economics, English, History, Journalism, Political Science and Psychology.

They had started the roll out for Sem V results yesterday on 3rd January, 2014 by releasing the result for B.Com (Prog).

(Link to declared results)

One day after the start of the new semester, Delhi University has rolled out a ‘tentative’ date sheet for the second semester Four Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP) examinations scheduled for May 2014. This tentative examination schedule was announced by the University on 3rd January, 2014.

The examinations for many courses start on 5th May while the last exam is seen to be scheduled on 22nd of May.

The scenario is seen to be similar to the previous semester, when the date sheet arrived much before results were declared for all years and subjects. While the date sheet for first year students has been released, it is still awaited for second and third year students.

FYUP students can check the date sheet here: Arts Courses | Commerce | Science | Foundation/Applied Courses


Little Black Book Delhi brings DU Beat’s readers something awesome to explore for the fortnight! This week we help you make your exam time a little more fun!

Exams are on our heads. Running around picking up last minutes notes, getting answers photocopied and calling friends to fill in the gaps for classes one did not attend is now a daily routine. And as tensions gets closer and we devour our books one after the other, it is important to take a break and have some food, watch some movies and plan some holidays. This time LBBD brings to you late night food, fashions blogs, free movies to look at and new trips to plan.

Remember all work and no play makes jack a dull boy!

1. Late Night Munchies

Image Credit: Midnight Munchies

Exam times are synonymous with late nights and after a marathon with Marx or Calculus there is no better respite than food. The Bun Butter Chai at Patel Chest will always be a late night haven for people in north while south campus students find solace in filling Parathas at Moolchand {Shah Rukh is a fan too!} and cutting chai at Safdarjung Hospital which is available 24/7. If you are too lazy to step out of your homes, there is Midnight Munchies to get you fresh salads, cup cakes and even paan right to your doorsteps till 4 am! For Gurgoan residents there is Batman Delivers will get you food, cigarettes and contraceptives! If you are looking to cook something on your own, here are a few recipes in 140 characters.

Batman Delivers | https://www.facebook.com/Batmandelivers

Midnight Munchies | https://www.facebook.com/midnightmunching

Recipes | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/17661/easy-summer-recipes-kishi-arora/

2. Free Movies


Movies are always a good option to clear one’s head after a long study day. If you are not looking to spend on it, the city has places that bring to you great alternative cinema. In south Delhi there is Habitat Centre, International Centre and Alliance Francaise, which screen documentaries and feature films. CP houses Instituto Cervantes, which screens Spanish feature films, while American Centre shows Hollywood blockbusters regularly.

3. Online Fashion Surfing


More than studying for the exams, we tend to scroll down web pages looking at fashion pages. So while one is at it, there are a few one can surely check out. Jamie and Kevin bring to you the absolute crème de la crème of fashion photography. The couple bring to you travel escapades, regal fashion and lifestyle photography.  Fashionista on the other hand provides quick and crisp fashion blogging. Mixing poetry, travel and lots of fashion in one blog is Arathi, the brainchild of Miffalicious.

Jamie & Kevin | http://annstreetstudio.com

Fashionista | http://fashionista.com/

Miffalicious | http://www.miffalicious.com

4. After Exam Plans

There is nothing better than wondering about how life would have been if there were no exams, especially when they are on our heads. There is the quick getaway to Rajasthan for the serenity of the dessert or the adventurous trip to Rishikesh. Nature lover can choose between wildlife in Kabini and marine life in Havelock Islands {or both!}. There is of course the party place Goa which will never run out of tourists or alcohol. Don’t let Holiday plans this time be confined to dreams or promises made around cup of coffees.

Getaways in December | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/10650/nye-getaways/

Join us on www.littleblackbookdelhi.com for more of the best of the city! Write to us at [email protected] for any suggestions, recommendations or inputs.