Delhi University is shifting from a three year Honours programme to a four year programme with multiple exits. One of the major changes that have been introduced is the abolishing of the BA Programme, B.Com Programme and B.Sc Programme courses and their syllabi, which were separate from those of the Honours syllabi, and forcing all students to do the same curriculum but giving a Pass course degree to those who exit at three years.
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The Programme courses catered to students who were not interested in doing research based higher education, or felt that they would not be able to cope with the higher level discipline papers, and were at the same time interested in doing courses on communication, social foundation, and applied vocational courses. The fyup has merged the Programme and Honours courses pedagogy, and the two separate kinds of curriculum, and is now making students interested in research do vocational and application courses, and students who did not want to do higher level discipline papers have to cope with them.
The other ramification of abolishing the Programme courses is that students who have scored a little lower in their Board exams and who could hope to get into Programme courses will now probably not get admission into Delhi University at all because the cut off percentages for Honours courses will be lowered only a little.
For students interested in the previous Honours programmes, the number of Discipline 1 papers is 18, which is the same, or less, than the Discipline 1 papers in the three years of the earlier system. What has been added is a research methodology paper in fourth year, along with one research paper. However, this research paper that will be written in the last semester comes at the cost of writing research papers, or assignments, every semester in the earlier system. The internal assessment in the FYUP has no writing anymore.
For interdiscipinarity there are Discipline 2 papers which replace the Concurrent papers of the earlier system. One inflexibility that has been introduced with the FYUP is that only if a student has done 6 papers in one Discipline 2 will s/he be allowed to do a Masters in that discipline. Until now, a student could switch to any other discipline for a Masters if they managed to clear the entrance test.
It seems now that only those students who have done all 6 papers of Discipline 2 will even be allowed to take the entrance test. This means that students have to take post graduate decisions while in their 2nd year of college.
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The 11 Foundation courses plus the one compulsory Application Course on translation will give students a school level toolkit understanding of all subjects without choice. Students who know that they will not do translation, pharmacy work, computational work, tour guide jobs etc.
will still be forced to study these things for a full 4 semesters. This imposition of having to study basic vocational skills of a plethora of jobs comes at the cost of having tutorials for Discipline 2, as well of curtailing the hours of study of each Discipline paper from 75 in the earlier system to 48 in the FYUP.
About the author:
Dr Vinita Chandra is an Associate Professor with the Department of English, Ramjas College, Delhi University.
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