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Maths(H) set to become tougher

A tougher and heavier syllabus in BA/BSc Mathematics Honours may be implemented before the beginning of the new academic session. Swaha Sahoo has the details.

delhi Updated: May 28, 2008 01:04 IST
Swaha Sahoo

A tougher and heavier syllabus in BA/BSc Mathematics Honours may be implemented before the beginning of the new academic session. If the proposed revision of the Empowered Committee appointed by the Vice-Chancellor is implemented not only will the course structure for Math change, the revision will increase the burden on both students and teachers. Moreover, teachers have protested saying they are unfamiliar with computer-aided software such as Matlab, Mathematica and Maple that might be introduced.

“The proposed Math syllabus is heavy, lengthy and tough. A number of concepts of advanced level (MSc /Mphil) have been introduced,” said a math teacher from Ramjas College. “This might result in making the course unpopular amongst students,” she said.

Majority of the 31 colleges that provide Math Honours course have voiced their discontent over the proposed revisions. “Two papers in Mechanics have been done away with. In contrast, three papers in DU’s MA/MSc Math syllabus are on Mechanics. Even the UGC Model curriculum for undergraduate course in mathematics includes Mechanics in the syllabus,” said Nandita Narayan, HoD, Math, at St Stephen’s. “Students preparing for Civil Services will face the most problem as these papers are compulsory,” Narayan said.

There is also a proposal to increase the number of tutorials from once a fortnight to once a week. “Where do we have the teachers for extra tutorials?” asked a teacher. “How can you implement the new syllabus in the first year when teachers are unfamiliar with computer aided software and other changes. They need training first,” Narayan said.

The total marks in the all the Math papers is also set to rise from 900 to 1200. “As per the Academic Committee recommendation the total marks of the Math Honours course should not exceed 1000,” said a teacher. The Delhi University Mathematics Teachers Association has opposed the changes saying it will not benefit students. “Applied Mathematics is the order of the day and we are doing away with these papers. When schools are trying to minimise stress on students by simplifying the syllabus, the University is doing the opposite,” said N.K. Jain, president of the Association and HoD Math at PGDAV College.