There is a substantial amount of teaching content available on the Internet. If students can learn things by watching YouTube videos and PowerPoint presentations, then what is the point of studying and paying Tk 13,500 for an online course? This question applies to private universities in Bangladesh that are continuing to teach online during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The whole country is now under lockdown and people are suffering. Some people are contracting the virus while others are dying from it. This pandemic is harming people mentally and economically. The current circumstances of Bangladesh are no longer suitable for studying – forcing students to do online classes in such a horrible situation is nothing more than a joke.
Although students are protesting against online exams, many university authorities are not listening to their students and are continuing their education activities online.
A private university student said, "If the authority fails to teach us properly on an online-based education system and wants to end the semester like this then they have to give us 50 percent of our money back. We are not paying Tk13,500 for each course to learn things from YouTube videos or slides; the authority should start its activities after the situation returns to normal."
"This kind of behavior by private universities shows that they consider their students money-making machines and their only aim is to profit from them," said another student who is currently studying at a private university in Bangladesh.
Almost all the students moved to their respective hometowns after the University Grants Commission (UGC) declared the closure of all educational institutions. Despite the UGC's order, private universities, however, are continuing their activities online.
The teachers are using multiple platforms – like Zoom meeting, Google meet, Facebook Live, and WhatsApp – for online classes. So, students who do not have smartphones are unable to access their online classes. Also, the Internet is a big issue for students in remote areas as not all parts of Bangladesh have strong internet connections.
Adjusting to this new learning method is becoming a big challenge for students. Many of the teachers are not familiar with this new technology and they are having difficulties in teaching students this way. Teachers are handing out assignments, one after another, without properly delivering their lessons.