Friday, March 28, 2008

Cancelled Tests! What a shame!

Hi dear readers!
Since there were no students on campus yesterday, we went to play pool and we had loads of fun...

I hope you are doing fine and that you are not too scared by the fact that we have just gone through a panic situation which really questions our ability to deal with natural calamities.
I got an inivation on Facebook yesterday to join a group for a petition to sack Go-Cool!!! Well best of luck!

Today was nice except the fact that there is something which i really did not appreciate.

We received a mail from the Registrar UoM about the showcase a couple of days ago, see part of it below

'The target audience being mainly UoM students , students from all Faculties/Centres/Departments may be released as from 11.30 a.m. on Friday 28 March 2008 to attend the event.

It would also be appreciated if any class tests scheduled on that day could be postponed to a later date if students so request. '

However there was a poster on campus, see below...for the time being omit the blue part written using a marker..... just a student rightfully voicing out his point of view...which so happens to be mine as well!

Well, there is a difference between students 'may be released', and 'there will be no classes'.

This caused some disturbance, the Registrar's e-mail specified that tests should be cancelled if requests was received from the students.

However some students did not even care to inform let alone request for cancellation but they even lacked the decency to inform their friends that they intended to have the test cancelled. So we have had students coming in for test when they had been 'cancelled'.

Should you look at what is written on the poster, you will see that a student has asked Is the showcase is more important than test?

I believe that the most logical may should have been the following.

If the students wanted to have their tests cancelled, they should have had their Class representatives REQUEST for it. It is so irresponsible and unconsiderate to just assume that the test would not be carried out, and then the students end up coming to uni for nothing.

I even had a student who told me that she took 3 buses to get to uni, just to learnt that the test was cancelled...
Come on students.... if you want to be treated like adults, then act as adults.

Futhermore, i believe that the poster tends to me misleading, and seems to override the words 'may be released'.

Well instead of organising so many concerts, play, shows, ... i believe that the students could invest this time in studying. I do agree that the student also grow when they participate in these events...but it seems that it is always the same group with participated, and the 'spectators' use it as an excuse to be out of class.... I tend to believe that a Uni student is big enough to make his own choices based on his priorities.

It is much like the whole Uni comes to a stand-still when an event is organised... how far is this acceptable?

Well....wake up students!!!
Instead of organising events, for entertainment of students, i think the Students union should endeavour towards the work for improvement of students conditions...these may include cameras for security and deterrent to thefts, better books in libraries, better and reasonably-priced food on campus, more computer labs with better computers or less virus infections...(you know what i am talking about), access to better online resources from digital libraries.
We are living in a culture, whereby if you do not ask you do not get...
Anyways, i went with Avinash to have a look at the Media Lab, the new MACs are sooo cool!!! I think i might got one as soon as i manage to save enough..the Graphical interface is soo good!

We got carried away (as you might have expected) exploring the MAC, that we forgot to have lunch...our lunch happened to be at 15 00.

Then we went to have tea at the 'Méchante Miss's Place', then went to Avi for some 'Mythical Bird', after which we wathced part of Snatch, well the part i watched was too cool!!! It is a typical English film with the accents and everything... As we were all hungry we went out for diner and the food was sooo cool!
A student of mine (C.D.Fowdar) quoted J.Albers :
Good teaching is more a giving of the right questions than a giving of the right answers. Well this is so true!

I would like to know your views about the cancellation of classes and tests due to events and shows...just as it happened today!


Anonymous said...

I'm 100% with you Gavin.

I too think that students should be in class during normal working hours and have their parties and showcases after classes.

I'm pointing my finger towards both the university administration and the students union here.

Both knew (?) that large cohorts tests were supposed to take place today.

Chaya said...

I'm in fact scared now, since i live in a "faubourg" in Port Louis which is famous about landslides during the natural calamities--cyclones, heavy rainfall,torrential rain etc... And in years to come, if systems/solutions are not implemented in my little "faubourg", sure thousands of people will lose their lives and their everything.

As conerns Showcase and postponed tests/cancelled lectures or tests, I would like to quote this bit from the President of the Student's Union email:"Release has been given for students, across the campus as from 11.30 hrs so that they can attend the show." which was also in bold characters.

I would say that : On n'a pas bien accorder le violon!

Though the show has been prepared and organised with the collaboration of SU and Administration(MAYBE),there was real mismanagement. The emails speak for themselves.

I personally think, if shows are being organised, and tests have been scheduled beforehand, these tests shouldn't be cancelled or postponed, those who choose shows instead of tests are doing so at their own risk. Even lectures shouldn't be cancelled.

Just like the French proverb: "Les absents ont toujours torts".

Last but not least, despite the so-called release of students, the auditorium was far from being 50% full.


Anonymous said...

Tests being postponed on request or on order doesn't really matter. These could get postponed anytime, and I don't really care.

But what I care about is being informed when they are re-scheduled! If only you knew the incertitude the students went through after the heavy rains.

Tests were scheduled on Wednesday and Thursday. Both got postponed. There was no info about a re-schedule. Some of us thought it would be on this Friday (28th). Then the emails came informing about the showcase. That dissipated some of our doubts as to tests being on Friday. But the "risk" was there.

Then our Maths for CS test got re-scheduled on Saturday. It was written in red on the CSE site. Then it was postponed, we were informed by email. This change still hasn't been reflected on the site. What if somebody doesn't check email or the site, or only one of these?

Even now we don't know when the tests are scheduled. Will there be test on Monday? If yes, what time? Where? Which test? That's some serious confusions and lack of information, which is not very nice coming from Uni. And re-scheduling tests on such short notice... well no comments. :(

G@V!N said...

Well to reply to postings of the Mr/Ms Anonymous (lol), I do comprehend the confusion and uncertainty about the rescheduling.

Well, the uncertainty is shared! I have written a mail and circulated in in the department, about how the rescheduling will be dealt with.

The sad thing is that if we keep the same times for tests on the same days next week, we will be missing two weeks' lecture.

Around the end of the semester, it is not easy to lose two weeks!

I will inform you as soon as the mail comes round.

I do agree that the communication was a bit hazy because i was personally taken aback by the Student's Union poster which seemed to override Registrars decision.

Put is this this: If you had a test scheduled at 12 00, and at 11 50 (or even later) a student formulated a request to have the test postponed, we would have been forced to cancel it (this is what happened).

So whether we would have had enough time to post a note on the website, is debatable.

But as for not checking e-mails and the website...well i think its the duty of students to check their e-mails at least twice a day..come on your are Studying Computer Science, and we are on a

Anonymous said...

"well i think its the duty of students to check their e-mails at least twice a day..come on your are Studying Computer Science"

gavin i shud remind you that checking mails in university labs is like waiting for a candle to burn!Now u wud say i shud check at home, well i live very far i lose 4h everyday in bus. So, to make efficient use of my time, i go in lib and study til late before going home... now uom's system is so crap that midcourse changes are made during the day notice are given 2hrs in advance!! wat the heck? isnt there no planning at the top level management??
next the thing with test weeks, only the CSE department conducts test week unlike other faculties or departments!
reshechuding of tests during the week fine but wat about the assignments?? will we be given one more week??

G@V!N said...

Well it seems there is plannin but the students seems to prefer party to study!

Furthermore as pointed out there was the 'mis-communication' which was at the root of this whole confusion.

Checking your university mail takes less than five minutes... do it once in the morning and once during the day.

I know that the network speed is slow...I was a student at UoM too.

Well going to library and study..thats a very good thing..Congrats!

I did not really understand what you meant by midcourse changes...

Well whether CSE is the only dept having test week... i am sure that is not really true.

There are other deparments in FLM who have a test week too. This is common! When would they do their tests otherwise.

As regarde rescheduling the test, the dept has yet to decide when and how..I already sent an e-mail and i am awaiting their reply.

However, as pointed out by Avinash, Students, Management and the Union knew about the test week, and furthermore, it is actually students who requested for the cancellation of test, plus the posters made the the Union were misleading.

As regards the assignment, i believe that you repspectice lecturers will be better able to answer that.

Anonymous said...

were you shocked when the student said he took 3 buses to come to uni?well i do that everytime i come to uni and im not the only one.moreover buses(l'express) refuse taking us aboard in my locality.see the pain some students undertake?and moreover test week a bunch of assignements exams.imagine the stress.go tell the other lecturers who put constant pressure on us but i guess you'll just be sayin manz r li.put urselves in our place!!

Anonymous said...

Well, I personally believe the concept of Test Week is a good idea. Students know exactly when they will have their tests, and all of them are grouped in one week. So the chance of accidentally missing a test for xyz reasons is reduced. And this also facilitates revision planning.

But plzzz instead of saying "It will be in week 18" or similar, just say "It'll be from
23-29 March" It's easier! :D

I know that this time, the rain caused quite a commotion, but in the future, please try to be more communicative about the cancellation and re-scheduling of tests. It's either by mail, or by website. Like this time, website says there's test. Email says it's cancelled. SU says we got release, website says nothing. I believe the saying about violins fits in here! :P

G@V!N said...

Anonymous: 'imagine the stress.go tell the other lecturers who put constant pressure on us but i guess you'll just be sayin manz r li.put urselves in our place!!'

Well first of all I have a request, theose who choose anonymous...please choose a little nickname like Snoopy, Miclek-Mouse or any little nickame which will make it easier for me to address you in my replies.

Well first, the issue of buses, it is a common issue that buses are redurisng to pick up students...just another bunch of dishonest people. You are meant to complain to NTA....stating the bus Registration number, time... but i dnt know if they can do something..
This is something the Student Union can look into!

Second: Test and Assignment, stress... Well there is just one thing i can say! Welcome to Univeristy. Its like this everywhere. You have to learn to manage your time. I believe that a student needs about 3 hours work per day regularly excluding lecture and lab time...May be better planning and management of time helps. Moreover no one can deny that most students leave it to the last minute..i Have done that too!!!

Third: 'put urselves in our place!!' Hey I was as seem to forget that I was a student at UoM too, and trust me - you are in a much better situation now! (Forget the Internet Connection - this is probably the only thing which remained unchanged)

In my days (well, i hope this does not make you realise that i am old!!) i.e abt 4-5 years ago: there was no Moodle to acces your notes via the Internet, and you had to come to uni and take your notes from the Server on 'dolphin'.

We had a much bigger student to PC ratio...the PCs were so old that when we were doing our own assignments for some modules like Web, we had to bring in our own PCs.

Think about carrying your CPU in a bus.

So i believe the only thing i need to say is 'MANZ ARE LI...'. I know Uni is hard, bacause it is a totally different 'life' with more freedom...and ppl tend to abuse this freedom...Well as i previously said, with freedom comes responsibilities. Do not expect anyone to be on your backs to force you to learn as Secondary school teachers (or tuition teachers) would do!

Anonymous said...

As some have told before me, it is really a shame to cancel class test/lecture on such short notice for some show where not even the tenth of the uni population will attend. Not only this creates a large confusion among both students and lecturers but it’s a pain to re-schedule the test for another day. And stressful for many of the students…

”But as for not checking e-mails and the website...well i think its the duty of students to check their e-mails at least twice a day..come on your are Studying Computer Science, and we are on a”

I have 4h of transport daily. Two hours from home to uni and vice versa. Say I am to come at uni at 9am I must leave home at latest at 7am, say I am to check my mail early morning before leaving to uni, was the mail here? Btw I don’t have laptop to check during my journey to uni lol. And also as mentioned above the connection is crappy so I cant check at uni. Besides I wouldn’t be surprised that there are many spybots and so on the pcs so I prefer as much as possible NOT to check my mail here.

I don’t agree with the anonymous X(I don’t who he/she is) who said that the concept of class week was a good idea. I prefer a system where I get class test at times but not in the same week. The class test penalizes students of other faculties. For example there are modules such as Programming methodology, SSD and a few others who are taken by students not from CSE dept. So during that week no lectures for ALL the students doing these modules. 1 week lost :/

I have one little complain abt class test by the CSE dept: CSE dept is MISERLY(ou avare ou bien crever si mo pane bien faire moi comprends) That’s the only dept I thk when going for class tests that you are told: Take out your own paper to do the test :/ I hadn’t bring any paper when going for my Programming Methodology test. Luckily I had pals with spare paper but just imagine the scene, some students going around and asking:”ene ti papier si ou plait pu mo cav prends part dans test ”

"We had a much bigger student to PC ratio...the PCs were so old that when we were doing our own assignments for some modules like Web, we had to bring in our own PCs.”

Well without being too sarcastic we’ll be back to that next year(back to lepok “margoz”) lol