DU moves to four-year courses

'Flexible' undergraduate courses to begin next session

Students seeking admission to Delhi University in the next session will get enrolled in a four-year undergraduate programme. DU's Executive Council approved the programme on Wednesday.

Talking about the reason behind bringing about this change, DU Vice-Chancellor Dinesh Singh said, "I spoke to many Sanskrit students. When asked if they would like to study another subject with Sanskrit, many of them said that they would like to study political science or computer science. One needs to understand the link between Sanskrit and statecraft and Panini's grammar and algorithms — something that Noam Chomsky saw. How many Chomskys have we lost because of the current education system?"

The four-year programme will give students a chance to study more than one subject. "The course will give students a chance to search a little and find their calling. The curriculum is trying to meet the needs of the nation," Singh said.

According to the proposed four-year structure, students will have to study 11 foundation courses over a duration of four semesters. These will include two papers in languages — English, Hindi and other modern Indian languages.

With the emphasis on inter and trans-disciplinarity, the university will also offer compulsory foundation papers in science, history, environment and public health, psychology, information technology, business and entrepreneurship, governance and citizenship, geography and social development and mathematics.

Apart from the foundation courses, students will study two disciplines — major and minor. The major discipline will be the subject in which the student secures admission and papers will be offered from the first semester itself. For the minor discipline, students will be expected to study six papers from the third semester onwards. "If a student has taken admission in physics (Honours) but also wants to study mathematics, he can do so by opting for mathematics as his minor discipline," Virender Bhardwaj, a teacher at Shivaji College and an Academic Council member, said.

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