Faculty questions Delhi University’s 4-year UG plan

The University of Delhi (DU) may claim it is ready to roll out its four-year undergraduate programme from July this year, but various segments of the varsity's faculty are raising doubts on the state of preparedness and even the need for such a course.

With hardly five months left for the new programme to begin, DU teachers allege that the course curriculum has not been designed so far, nor have they been briefed about it. Others claim that lack of infrastructure would be a deterrent in implementing the four-year course.

"This is a dilution of the Honours system as it only adds one year in the students' study life and does not offer anything new. Moreover, it does not go with the 10+2+3 system of education. The new system also looks at removing tutorials, which have been the backbone of our academic system," says Dr Vinita Chandra of the department of English, Ramjas College.

The four-year UG programme offers a multiple degree option with 42 papers that the students have to clear with a 40% in aggregate to get an Honours degree. It is not necessary for the students to pass each paper individually.

In fact, DU teachers claim that the 61-member task force, which was set up over a year ago to devise the new system, has met only a few times and has no representation from the post-graduate departments of history, economics, political science and English, among others.

"We are not being informed about the developments related to the revisions and how the new curriculum is to be designed and that too in such a short period of time. They are yet to decide if there are enough courses to be included in it," adds Dr Rina Ramdev, associate professor of English at Venkateswara College.

In the first year, students will have to study a foundation course comprising elements from . governance and citizenship, language, literature and creativity, geographical and socio-economic diversity, among others. In the next two semesters, students would have to opt for a discipline of their choice, called discipline course I, and can continue with the same in the third year, which is called discipline course II. In the fourth year, students have to take up the traditional scheme of papers related to their respective disciplines.

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