FILM and Television Institute of India (FTII) has decided to review its new syllabus, which was introduced with much fanfare in 2016, after all the departments — ‘without exception’ — conveyed to the administration that it needs to be “altered, changed or rearranged” to better meet learning objectives.
This is one of the many important academic issues that would be discussed at the 79th Academic Council meeting scheduled to take place in Mumbai on Tuesday. The meeting would be chaired by newly appointed Chairman B P Singh.
The major objections to the new syllabus is that it does not provide enough time for satisfactory completion of courses, workshops, practicals and exercises. Students, for years, have been demanding that the diploma course be made into a four-year programme by adding a full year to the existing three-year structure.
The syllabus based on credit system was introduced by the FTII in 2016. The new syllabus, which FTII called “learner-centric”, has semester system and modular structure with salient features like continuous evaluation, choice-based credit system and electives. The syllabus is at par with the Masters’ degree programmes of any reputed university. The system was drafted and approved after the University Grants Commission (UGC) had issued guidelines that all institutes of higher learning should incorporate a choice-based credit system.
As per the syllabus, the three-year course consists of six semesters of 20 weeks each. Four semesters of the new syllabus have already been completed and the fifth semester is currently in progress. The sixth semester comprises of mainly diploma film project.
As the first batch with the new syllabus entered its fifth semester a few weeks ago, the FTII decided to form a team to review it, said a council member.
According to sources, all departments, without exception, have suggested that certain subjects need to be elaborately defined, changed or rearranged in the existing syllabus so that learning objectives are met. These changes suggested by the department need in depth analysis and discussions since they have repercussion on timely completion of courses.
The administration has, hence, proposed to appoint a syllabus review committee, which would be tasked to go through suggestions made by individual departments and submit its report to the chairman, academic council within three months.
FTII had effected the revised syllabus in June, 2016 after being in the pipeline for several years. Students not finishing the courses on time had remained a big headache for the institute for almost one and a half decade since it updated its syllabus in 2000.
FTII to play host for JET 2019
When the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting decided that two film and television institutes under its wing — FTII Pune and Satyajit Ray Flim and Television Institute, Kolkata — would conduct a joint entrance test (JET) for annual admissions, it was envisaged that the the two institutes would conduct the JET alternatively.
FTII had conducted the JET in 2018, wherein 5,293 aspirants across the country had taken the test for 11 courses at FTII and 12 courses at SRFTI in film, television and new media fields.
According to sources, in November 2018, officials from FTII and SRFTI held a joint meeting, where it was unanimously decided that “in order to maintain continuity and improve quality” and since FTII had gained experience by conducting the first JET, it would also play host for the JET 2019, which would be held in February-March, 2019.