The University of Delhi (DU) is planning to rope-in the National Testing Agency (NTA) to conduct the entrance exams for admission to various courses to the varsity. The proposal has been approved by the admissions committee and has already reached the NTA. The director general, NTA, Vineet Joshi said, “we have already received the proposal and have given a nod now they (DU) have to decide the rules of conducting the exam and we will reach a conclusion thereafter.”
Delhi University admissions chairperson, Rajeev Gupta said, “There is a proposal to ask NTA to conduct the DU entrance exams. The exam will only be for the courses for which entrance is already a mandate and no new courses are being brought under the ambit. The pattern and syllabus for the exam are also to remain the same.”
While admissions to most of the courses in the DU are merit-based, there are some courses for which entrance exams are conducted.
The varsity was mulling to take the entrance exam process online since three admission cycles now but there have been many rifts within the varsity regarding the idea. Hans Raj, professor, member of academic council and former member of admissions committee said, “The proposal to take entrance exam online has been there within the varsity since long but if this is accepted then it might prove to be unfavourable for students hailing from rural areas or with lesser privileged backgrounds as they are likely to face issues attempting exams online.”
The demand for the same has caught fire again after the NTA has been appointed to conduct the entrance examinations for the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU). The JNU entrance going online and objective-type based had received flak from the JNU students union (JNUSU). The JNU students Union (JNUSU) has opposed the MCQ-based exam claiming, “The time-tested method of conducting JNU entrance exam assessing the different aspects of a student’s potential for learning and research has been replaced without any academic reasoning.”
Following JNU’s path, the DU has also decided to give some advantage to students from government schools and those who have done their schooling in villages. This is in addition to the benefits given to female students.
The proposal for DU’s entrance exam has not been discussed in the academic council (AC) meeting yet which is the standard procedure. The rules regarding the exams are likely to be discussed in the next meeting of AC.
The DU currently conducts entrance examination for admission to courses including — B.Com (honours), journalism courses, BBA, BFA, Elementary education Music, Humanities and social science, physical health education and sports, BTech in informatics and mathematics vocational.
Meanwhile, the DU will be introducing 30 new courses across colleges from this academic year. Additionally, 282 setas have been added across DU in already running courses. The academic council of the University of Delhi (DU) has given its nod to 30 new courses to be introduced across colleges in the varsity. The courses include both undergraduate and postgraduate level programmes which will be imparted in a choice-based credit system (CBCS) from the coming academic year 2019-20 onwards. Moreover, 10 vocational courses will also be launched which will impart part-time certificates to students.
In addition to the new courses, the council meeting has also approved a proposal by several colleges to increase the number of seats in their ongoing courses. A total of 282 seats have been added across colleges in the Delhi University which will be open to enrolment from the coming admission cycle.
Out of which, 80 new seats have been added to the BA programme at Hans Raj College which makes it now 100 seats. In Aditi Mahavidyalaya, the seats in B.Com programme have been increased from 55 to 80 and seats in B.Com (hons) in the same college have been extended from 45 to 92. Additionally, 50 seats will be offered under Maharishi Valmiki College.
A three-member committee appointed by the DU has also given green signal to the demand of Florence Nightingale College of Nursing to be affiliated to the university and introduce a course of B.Sc nursing (honours) through DU. However, this request is subjected to the appointment of faculty, acceptance and abiding of syllabus and norms of the varsity, according to the academic council (AC).
“The requests by the colleges to start new courses have been granted. A total of 40 courses were proposed out of which 30 have been passed. They will be introduced in the new academic year. The courses were approved by the standing committee which passed it on to the AC,” informed Hans Raj, professor, Sri Aurobindo College and member of the academic council.
Implementation of the new courses and expansion of seats combined may add up to as much as 25 per cent total new seats for students from this year onwards. According to Hans Raj, this might prove to be additional pressure on the funds and staff of the varsity. Hence, he has also written to the University Grants Commission (UGC), Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry, and the vice chancellor of DU seeking additional grants for the new courses.
“Generally when new courses are introduced, colleges ask the teachers working with the departments to take the additional responsibility and for specialised lectures, guest faculty is invited. With the introduction of so many courses and the 10 per cent reservation coming into the picture, we will be expanding as many as 25 per cent seats. This will be an additional burden on the faculty and administration. We would need 3000 more teachers to join the university,” Hans Raj
The approval is subjected to the condition that the college must appoint full-time faculty for the academic session 2019-20 and ensure availability of infrastructure, states the AC in an official release. The admission to M.Ed programme will be done through the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE).
The committee has also recommended introducing MD course in Dravyaguna (ayurvedic pharmacology) and Panchkarma in Ayurvedic and Unani Tibbia College in which five and three seats will be added per year respectively. But the final nod will be given only after approval from the regulatory authority.
The council has approved to add courses including physical education as a discipline course in BA programme at Lakshmi Bai College and Vivekanand College and Computer science as a discipline of BA programme at Lakshmi bai college from next academic year onwards.
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