While Delhi University’s (DU) Bachelors in English Literature remains a much sought after course, languages other than English have become equally important among students. Thanks to the globalisation and the expanding Indian market where foreign nations are investing with increasing fervour and thereby creating jobs for locals, learning a foreign language is an added advantage.
In India, European languages such as French, German, Spanish and Italian have been regarded as the traditional favourites but languages from Southeastern countries such as Japanese, Korean and Mandarin are gaining popularity. The reason is the good pay package and comparatively lesser competition.
V Ramalakshmi, Associate Professor, Department of East Asian Studies, DU, said, “Japanese has been popular ever since Maruti Suzuki started in India. Chinese is increasingly finding favour with students,” she said, adding that there is a spurt in student strength for Chinese courses as the number of students they are getting now for the language course is in three digits.
Talking about the trends in students’ options for language based courses, the associate professor said that it keep changing. “Russian used to be really popular with students whereas now it does not find many takers,” she said.
Nitin Mishra, who has just completed MA Japanese from the Department, said that foreign language courses help in getting better salary packages. “If you do an MBA and get a job, your initial package might not be that great. But after doing a specialised language course such as Japanese, even freshers can get manageable packages,” he said.
Another student of the Department, Swati, who has done a one-year intensive course in Japanese, says that she took up the course as she loved Japanese anime cartoons. “One can also go into academics or corporate, besides animation or become translators and interpreters or even work at embassies,” she said.
The Delhi University offers full-term three year UG, PG, MPhil, Ph D as well as part-time courses in Indian as well as foreign languages. It also has specific departments dedicated to the study of languages.
Part time certificate courses:
The Department of Germanic and Romance Studies (GRS) offers part-time certificate courses in Portuguese and Romanian at the certificate, diploma and the advanced diploma level. The classes for these courses are held at the department itself.
The classes for the department’s French, German, Italian and Spanish courses, for all the three levels, are offered at various North and South Campus colleges. To enroll in these part time courses, one must be a student of DU college. The part-time courses are not open to outsiders.
The Department of Slavonic and Finno-Ugrian Studies (SFUS) offers part time courses in Russian, Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Hungarian and Polish at the Certificate, Advanced and the Diploma level. These courses do not require the candidate to be a student of DU. Anybody who had passed Class 12 with minimum 45 per cent marks can apply.
Given below is the list of colleges with the courses they offer in collaboration with the GRS department:
To enroll in the part time courses run by the GRS Department, one must be a student of DU college. These courses are not open to outsiders. However, the part time courses run by SFUS Department are open to outsiders.
Bachelors (BA) courses:
The varsity offers BA courses in various Indian languages such as Bengali, Punjabi, Urdu and Sanskrit. It also offers international language courses such as French, German, Italian, Spanish, Persian, Arabic at the UG level.
DU has a Linguistics course students can apply to as well.
How to apply: Interested students can apply to these courses at the start of the application process for undergraduate admissions every year at Delhi University. The admissions follow a cut-off mark system.
In 2015, the cut-offs for French, German, Italian and Spanish were:
Post graduate courses:
DU has Masters programmes in collaboration with the GRS in French, German, Italian, Spanish. The varsity also runs separate MA courses in Arabic, Japanese, Russian Studies, Punjabi, Urdu, Sanskrit, Persian and Bengali.
A wide array of courses are available at the MPhil level which are not offered at the MA or BA level. Students can enroll for MPhil programmes in languages such as Arabic, French, German, Russian, Sanskrit, Punjabi, Persian, Linguistics, Hispanic and Bulgarian.
The Department of East Asian Studies offers full time intensive courses in Korean, Chinese and Japanese.
How to apply: Admission to these courses is done through a written test followed by an interview.
The SFUS Department offers Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, as an elective course in the MA Russian Studies programme.
Ph D programmes:
The GRS has doctoral programmes students can enroll in French, Italian, Spanish and German. Other than these, you can apply for Ph D courses in Arabic, Linguistics, Persian, Punjabi, Sanskrit and Urdu with the respective departments.
How to apply: Candidates wishing to enroll into a doctoral programme to at the GRS need to contact the Office of the Assistant Registrar, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, (Room No 18), Arts Faculty Building, University of Delhi. They can apply by submitting an application to the Head of the Department.
To know more about these courses, students can log on to the official website of the university – du.ac.in.
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