If the connection is skipped, the exam is canceled. This is the discussion that, at the dawn of the new and unpredictable summer session, is mobilizing students from all over Italy. Although the Italian digital divide is clear, the first statements on the official performance of the test have come from the Tor Vergata University of Rome and the fellow citizen La Sapienza and, already at a first reading, the controversies have arisen. But the truth that stands out for greater attention seems to be completely different, as we will see shortly.
According to the recent Istat survey, 33.8% of Italian families own a computer or tablet at home: even 47.2% have one and only 18.6% have two or more. A serious technological deficiency also follows a poor internet connection, determined both by the location location and by the actual needs prior to Covid 19. Yet, from the two Roman universities the declarations regarding the connection have been extremely clear. The Tor Vergata University, in fact, immediately specified that « for a good quality group video call, the minimum network requirements are 500kbps (upload) / 1Mbps (download). It is recommended to check the connection speed, possibly carrying out an online speed test »; Sapienza also specified that students should have two devices equipped with a camera, microphone and speaker.
And what if the connection drops? What happens if you don’t have two devices?
As for the second question, the answer is reported directly in the Vademecum of the University La Wisdom that specifies, as a second device, the smartphone usually owned by a student. While, in the first case, the answer is not so obvious and a real controversy has arisen. In the same document made available by the University of Tor Vergata it is possible to read that « u n malfunction of the shooting system, connection or an unsuitable shot will lead to the cancellation of the test ».
The interpretation of newspapers and students was that, in the event of a loss of connection, the student will therefore be rejected, a vision that today is unleashing the wrath of the web. In reality, the university only specifies that if the connection is lost, the exam will simply be canceled, thus presuming a second possibility of recovery, even if this has not been specified.
Unlike other universities, which clarify how to recover exams not taken or partially taken due to the connection, the lack of this specification has given rise to the controversy, in essence, unfounded.
So, in addition to the rennet panic, in this situation it is absolutely important to prepare yourself for what you are going to face and to be clear about the circumstances.
Here are three useful tips to better face this new session:
— Even if you cannot meet physically, organize online study groups to review and present together the key concepts of the exam: it will help you to exhibit in front of the video camera and to focus on the interlocutor;
— To help you not lose concentration during the study phase, turn off any other device other than the one in use: your mind will have less distractions;
— Never say « I can’t do it «: these words lead the mind to believe that it really is so and it is very important to always think positively.
Finally, we want to remind you that this is only a momentary phase: the true course of study of a university student, his life outside the school, the invaluable experience that it entails, can never be replaced by this way of doing university today. So don’t give up because real university life will soon come back: we already know.