With Delhi University (DU) announcing a rollback of the four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP), clarity on the undergraduate admission process is still awaited. For students and aspirants of the BTech and Bachelor in Management Sciences (BMS) courses, the rollback has come as a major setback.
For colleges, the rollback means crunching seats of Honours courses. Under the three-year programme, undergraduate courses in DU were either Honours degrees or Programme/Pass degrees. When the FYUP was implemented, the university had done away with the Programme courses and these seats had been distributed among the Honours courses. With the UGC directing the university and its colleges to go back to the three-year course, colleges are expected to re-distribute these seats.
While a committee of principals to oversee the admission process has been constituted by DU, it remains to be seen if the application process will have to be initiated afresh. According to some college principals, however, the university does not need to invite fresh applications.
“Two years ago, admissions had been made without any application process. Cut-offs had been declared by colleges on the basis on the Class XII results and the previous years’ cut-offs. Since we did not invite applications for any Programme courses this year, the same admission process can be conducted for these courses,” Hindu College principal Pradyuman Kumar said.
Meanwhile, colleges and students are concerned about the fate of the BTech and BMS courses — introduced under the four-year programme last year.
“The BTech and BMS courses were good for students coming from economically weaker sections. As opposed to the private universities where they are required to pay lakhs of rupees for these courses, students could get a BTech and BMS degree in around Rs 40,000 per year. We do not know what will happen to these courses with the university switching back to the three-year format,” a college principal said on the condition of anonymity.
Incidentally, as the FYUP controversy had raged, the university had conducted the BMS entrance tests on Thursday as per the earlier admission schedule.
The standing committee set up by the UGC has recommended for the existing BTech courses to be left untouched, except for decreasing the number of foundation courses in them.
But, students studying BTech are still uncertain about the fate of the courses. “BTech courses were introduced during the implementation of FYUP. And if FYUP is all set to go, I guess the BTech courses will go too,” Ansh Goyal, a student of BTech at Maharaja Agrasen College, said.
Asked about the course of action, he replied, “I am too stunned and confused right now to actually have a plan, since the standing committee has recommended keeping them. So let’s wait and watch.”
Two days ago, BTech students had held demonstrations in the university campus and even outside the UGC office, demanding that the course should not be rolled back.
It also remains to be seen if the university administration will decide to conduct entrance exams for courses such as English (Honours) and Journalism (Honours). The entrance tests for these courses had been scrapped when the four year programme was implemented last year.