A committee appointed by Delhi University to look into the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP) has come up with a four-year Bachelor’s degree programme course structure, similar to the Four-Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP) which was implemented in 2014 and then scrapped, a section of teachers alleged Thursday.
Vivek Suneja, Chairman of DU’s NEP Implementation Committee (NIC), sent an email to its members on December 15 forwarding the proposed structure of the four-year programme, which includes exit options after the end of each year, and granting a degree only at the end of the fourth year. He did not respond to calls and texts.
Democratic Teachers’ Front (DTF) said DU was moving towards “hasty implementation” without consulting stakeholders and that exit options would “encourage and institutionalise the system of drop-outs, especially among students from socially and economically underprivileged sections, particularly women”.
It said the attempt to implement NEP from next year will give no time for deliberations: “The insistence on a four-year duration to get an Honours degree which has been available in three years implies students are short-changed manifold: they spend one extra year for the same degree with no value addition at a much higher cost… The proposed NEP structure will have adverse effects on workload for the next few years… because of uneven workload across semesters, there will be seasonal unemployment for teachers,” they said.
DUTA President Rajib Ray said: “Teachers and students across the country have opposed NEP as the thrust remains commercialisation of education sector. It is extremely unfortunate that instead of focusing on how best to reach out to students during pandemic, policies are being bull-dozed. DUTA will have its executive meeting early next week to discuss this matter,” he said.
Academic Council member Deo Kumar said the system would not only affect quality of education but push teachers towards a contractual system.
However, NIC members said all factors were being considered. “Our job is only to see how NEP can be implemented in DU. We are trying to discuss and address issues of workload and infrastructure. All concerns are being deliberated,” said Arun Atree, an NIC member.
Hindu College Principal Anju Srivastava, who is also a member, said, “Many things are being brainstormed and evaluated. It will take time to come to a decision. We are trying to add value to courses and address all concerns.”
Over the past decade, DU has transitioned from the annual examination mode to semester mode, followed by the implementation of FYUP for a year, and finally the CBCS (choice based credit system).
FYUP, introduced in 2014, was criticised for both its structure. In terms of structure, the degree one got would be dependent on when they dropped out of the course. Dropping out after one year would mean a certificate, at the end of the second year in would mean a diploma and at the end of third year would be the equivalent of the current BA/BSC Programme. Students would need to sit through the entire four years to get an honours degree. This, many said, would undermine the quality of education.
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