Like RJ Balaji is often quoted saying, I recently had an ‘awesomatic of the aaromaley’ moment when I finished my last ever internal exams. Ever. (Unless doing a Masters programme is on the cards! Hmm!)  ‘Half a decade’ of college life is coming to an end and I thought this concept of internal exams deserves special mention.

In SOEL it basically acts like a pre-semester exam alarm. It springs up abruptly during both the odd and even semesters. Just when we feel like ‘Phew… These projects can be mind-numbing!’ (Especially when the topics aren’t chosen by us!) and we kind of think of chilling for a little while…BAM…the internal exams hits us with all its mighty force. Now these exams, unlike the main semester exams, take place without a day’s gap in between. So there’s no time for recovery before the next blow. It is 5 consecutive days of putting our brains through a blender, at the end of which we’ll be left reeling (No. It is not a hyperbole). Trust me, after the internals, my brain usually feels like it could do with a hug.

The portions will usually be 3 whole units per subject, out of the 5 we have in toto. And we get a measly 90 minutes to test our memory power and speed writing skills. We will be made to write for 50 marks and they’ll convert it into a grand total of 10 marks out of 30 as a part of the comprehensive internal components. This is one of the many moments where we really understand ‘SOUL with SOEL’ (For the uninitiated, this motto is my university’s mission statement! No. Again, I’m not kidding.) Really, when is this archaic system of skullduggery going to be thrown out the window? *rolls eyes*

It is during these tumultuous times that we find solace via social networking sites (The memes, gosh, they never fail to crack me up!) and apps. There’s many a time when friends have bonded over these exams, sympathizing with each other’s plights. It is during this time when zillions of pictures of notes, snippets from guides and textbooks, screenshots of seemingly relevant data etcetera are uploaded and downloaded, rapidly filling up the ever decreasing memory space in our wonder gadgets (Oh yeah, I’m a no-mophobic!).

It is also the time of the year when my caffeine levels shoot up. Coffee – it functions as my elixir of life. A mug of piping hot coffee and the occasional Good-day biscuits and my earphones, well, that sets me up for a good study session. Music, is something akin to my driving force, it helps me focus and keeps all audible distractions at bay.  At this juncture, I really should have a shout-out to all those good souls a.k.a. roomies who, over the years, have put up with my super shrill whistling and the occasional karaoke sessions whilst I’m reading!

It is also very curious to note that Robin Cook thrillers and debates about the Mahabharatam are so much more interesting when the internal exams are going on. That’s when the bibliophile in me comes out all guns blazing and makes concentrating on the comparatively much less appealing laws tough. Phew! Speaking of things becoming more appealing, even inanimate objects like the wall and  patterns on the bedspread can make you wonder and your mind wander!

Despite all the snarky things I’ve said about internal exams, it has left me with a bittersweet feel, just like those pesky cycle tests we had during the 10th and 12th grades, way back in school. This newfound realization of things becoming final and conclusive is both liberating and scary at the same time. Well, they didn’t say ‘change is the only constant’ for nothing! (I’m getting the feel that I’m going to be using this phrase a lot in the near future!)   It has always been a vicious circle though, because one can never learn from the previous internal exams experience.

And this sums up a SOELite’s take on the internal exams!