Delhi University (DU) Vice-chancellor Yogesh Singh on Friday said the current system of admissions at the university had “issues” that needed to be addressed, as different school boards marked students differently creating a discrepancy.
In an interview with The Indian Express, Singh said, “In the present system, there are issues which are to be addressed. We cannot ignore the performances of students of different boards, like Uttar Pradesh Board… They are not liberal vis-à-vis other boards. They are very tight while giving marks. So their students may be suffering; they are. If they want to take admissions in Delhi University, they don’t have a fair chance.”
He said DU was looking at how to conduct admissions next year, and the process would be finalised in an Academic Council (AC) meeting on December 10, after approval from the Executive Council (EC) on December 17.
“The first option is to continue with the present system. The second option would be normalisation of marks of various boards… Suppose in one board, topper is of 90% and in another board, the topper is of 70%, we make all 100% normalise the marks of all students and then determine merit. This is also a technique but it is slightly difficult to implement because for some of the boards we may not get the data which is accurate. There may be some issues, but it is doable. Like BITS (Birla Institute of Technology) used to do it in the initial stage,” he said.
Singh said the other options were to go with an entrance test — the Central Universities Common Entrance Test (CUCET) or DU’s own entrance test — or to have a “mixed mode” based 50% on entrance and 50% on board marks.
“Status quo is an option. Whether it’s a good option or not, I don’t know right now. AC meeting on December 10, the matter will be discussed… By this month we will finalise so that students will get adequate time for preparation,” he said, adding that “if AC or EC decide to go for entrance test, then CUCET is a good option.”
Asked why DU was not re-starting in-person classes on campus, Singh said students came from various states, and the status of the pandemic there needed to be taken into account.
He said DU would open for practicals for all batches very soon, but for theory classes there was a problem as the disaster management Act allows only 50% capacity, and several colleges and courses have overadmitted students.
“If DDMA allows 100% capacity, we will immediately start offline classes,” he said, adding that he would ideally like to first bring in the third-year students.
On implementation of the new national education policy (NEP) and the question of autonomy to colleges, Singh said, “If I’m not the VC and you ask me, then we should be autonomous. We should go for autonomy, it is good for everyone. But here we have to see the rules, regulations, and whether they are provisions. I’m told there is no provision in the DU Act to give autonomy to anyone.”
Singh also said that “teacher recruitment will be a regular process” in the university. On the demand for absorbing ad hoc faculty, he said, “If it is possible under law, we will do it. I cannot go beyond the law.”
“I want Delhi University to be in the first 200 best universities of the world as per Times Higher Education or QS,” Singh said. For this, the focus needed to be on improving the student-teacher ratio, quality and quantity of research, and introducing consultancy, he said.
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