The Delhi University V-C recently said at the Idea Exchange session at The Indian Express that the varsity is considering extending teaching hours in its colleges from 8 am to 8 pm. The aim behind this proposition is to expand the number of seats, said Vice-Chancellor Yogesh Singh.
However, this proposal has not gone down well with students and faculty members. They tell indianexpress.com why this move will tire students staying far.
— Anju Srivastava, principal of Hindu college
The Vice-Chancellor has said this and it is correct. I can understand the point that he is trying to make. It’s a huge responsibility to accommodate students. The only way we can accommodate more students in various organisations today is by looking into how to make the best use of the existing infrastructure. In spite of the fact that most of the colleges have expanded the space requirements and have been able to provide additional space, all of these colleges have been made an average 40-50 years ago, and that time the student intake was much less.
So, if we have to accommodate and give a good teaching and learning experience, then this is one of the ways. What are the logistics behind it and practical ways of doing it, then we need to have a thorough look into it.
Currently, we also do not have the right amount of faculty. Human resources can still be increased and people will have to work for the stipulated hours, but we also need to see the infrastructure limitations.
— Khushi Sharma, BCom (Hons), 1st year, Sri Ram College of Commerce
I feel like our timetable is hectic as we have 5-6 classes every day, including tutorials and labs. On top of that, we need to complete seven subjects in the span of three months. Also, there are so many other things that college offers such as societies and fests, that we would like to participate in. So, it would be exhausting if the college hours are extended. Also, I live in Faridabad (Haryana) and it takes me two hours to reach home from campus, so I would prefer me reaching home before dusk, which may not be possible if the teaching hours are extended.
To expand the number of seats, DU can consider adding more colleges under its umbrella because accommodating a large number of students under one college would only make the learning environment more difficult at the individual level.
—Devansh Singh Solanki, five-year integrated programme in Journalism, 3rd year, Delhi School of Journalism
I think the idea behind it is expedient but implementation and optimum utilisation of the resources is the key here. DU has been functioning with understaffing for years and putting more burden on it might not help the cause. Accommodating more students to ensure quality education for all is a noble idea but not a feasible option anytime soon at DU. A large number of ad-hoc teachers at DU are known for their quality, wit and expertise.
— Bhavika Srivastava, BSc (Hons) Computer Science, 1st year, Indraprastha College for Women
If the same students are made to study and have classes with breaks in between, it will obviously be a tiresome experience for them. Even the teachers will not be able to teach with the same efficiency and interest.
So, instead, Delhi University should divide the students into two slots: morning shift (8am to 2pm) for some courses and evening shift from (2pm to 8pm) for the remaining courses. That way, it will be easier for teachers too. The arrangements should be made in such a way that it neither exceeds the bearable time of teachers nor the students. The staff can also be divided accordingly.
— Navya, BA (Hons) Pol Sci, 2nd year, Lakshmibai College
I think it’s a very selfish motive — just to increase the seats the whole point of students’ convenience is being unconsidered. There are multiple students who travel long distances to attend their classes, and it is not at all feasible for them to attend classes that go on over a period of 12 hours. This is a university where students come from all kinds of social backgrounds and not everyone is privileged enough to attend classes that will go on for that long.
Also considering that more than 50 per cent of the strength of the university consists of girl students, it is also unsafe for them to possibly travel that late after college. In my opinion, it is not at all a well-thought or an efficient idea. It can cause a lot of inconvenience and problems for the students, probably resulting in protests and furthermore creating an uproar in the university. To deal with the issue of increasing the number of seats, DU can increase the number of colleges or promote evening colleges more.
— Tisha Khandelwal, BA (Hons) English, 2nd year, Lakshmibai College
If the teaching hours get extended, students will have no time to pursue their hobbies, balance internships or to even take up extra courses. Many students even travel more than an hour to come to college and it will just reduce their motivation to attend.
For expanding the amount of seats, the number of evening schools can be increased or new infrastructure can be built to accommodate pupils. But, having said that, if the seats get increased drastically it can hinder or dilute the academically rich background DU promises.