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Extra classes,accreditation issue on the anvil at DU Academic Council meeting today

Acknowledging the failure of its remedial classes for SC/ST undergraduate students,the Delhi University is planning to introduce an extra period of classes per paper for reserved category students.

Written by Deepu Sebastian Edmond | New Delhi |
November 9, 2009 3:56:25 am

Acknowledging the failure of its remedial classes for SC/ST undergraduate students,the Delhi University is planning to introduce an extra period of classes per paper for reserved category students.

For the first time,DU also proposes to bring OBC students in the loop.

The proposal is part of the agenda of the Academic Council’s (AC) meeting scheduled for November 9.

“It has been observed that a large number of students belonging to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in practically every course of the University either fail or drop out. The gap between students of reserved and general categories academically is alarming,” states the agenda for the AC meeting.

As reported by Newsline,the AC meeting will also debate a proposal by the University Grants Commission to let National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) accredit DU-affiliated colleges. The process will also involve setting up of an Internal Quality Assurance Cell. The AC had rejected an earlier proposal to let NAAC accredit its colleges. The Delhi University Teachers’ Association still opposes the move.

The proposal follows a letter by UGC Chairman Sukhdeo Thorat to DU Vice Chancellor Deepak Pental on July 24. After mentioning that the UGC is mulling over making the accreditation process mandatory,Thorat wrote,“The Commission has decided to provide financial support to all universities for creation of IQAC for periodic monitoring of the quality of all institutions of higher education under the purview of the UGC.”

“The UGC is attempting to link grants to accreditation through this process — the better the grade of the college,the more grants it will get. It can,however,be argued that colleges that are worse off should be given more funds,” DU Executive Council member Rajib Ray said.

Even before the issue comes up for discussion,it is understood that AC members may raise objections to the number of actions taken by the VC using his emergency powers.

“The VC has been using his emergency powers indiscriminately to suit him,even though a UGC directive asks VCs not to use these powers for trivial matters,” AC member Vijay Singh said.

Also,the getting approval for the minutes of June 5,15 and July 22 meetings of the AC can prove cumbersome,since members maintain the semester system was not passed by them in the June 5 meeting. The last entry in the June 5 minutes mentions,“Resolved that the semester system be introduced at the undergraduate level with effect from the academic session 2010-2011”.

“The VC adjourned the meeting amid pandemonium,and the issue was not discussed. The proposal was not passed by the AC,” J Khuntia,AC member,said.

The AC will also consider renaming of the Department of Environmental Biology to Department of Environmental Studies and discontinuing the School of Environmental Studies. This would effectively scrap the MSc course in Environmental Biology. Also on the agenda is the decision to move the separate Law Centres under the Faculty of Law to a 12.7-acre campus near Mukherjee Nagar.

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