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A new kind of classroom

Pranav Jain (15) has been attending classes at K.C. College, Chruchgate, since the last week of April. This was even before his Class 10 Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) results were declared.

mumbai Updated: Jul 28, 2010 01:02 IST
Yashshri Soman

Pranav Jain (15) has been attending classes at K.C. College, Chruchgate, since the last week of April. This was even before his Class 10 Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) results were declared.

Jain is among a growing number of students who are opting for integrated classes in junior colleges. Integrated classes are those where junior colleges tie up with coaching classes to prepare students for competitive exams along with the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) exam.

The annual fees for these integrated classes can be as high as Rs 2 lakh. Colleges have already enrolled students in integrated classes on the basis of entrance tests conducted by coaching classes. But students have to secure admission in the college through the online admission process.

“We do not guarantee students admission to the college just because they are part of the integrated class,” said Manju Nichani, principal of K.C. College, where around 100 students registered this year for the integrated class for the Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) coaching, on the basis of which Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) admit students.

“The students are allowed to continue attending classes at the college only after their admission at the college is confirmed,” she said.

Since coaching classes are a reality that colleges cannot ignore, integrated classes were devised four years ago for the convenience of students to have both college and coaching class under one roof.

Those who fail to make the college cut-off have the option of continuing tutorials at coaching class centres. The integrated courses are most popular with engineering aspirants

“It is convenient as I stay nearby and I won’t have to attend college and coaching classes at separate locations,” said Jain, who scored 93 per cent in Class 10. “I hope to secure admission at K.C. College so that I can continue in the integrated class there.”

Some colleges reserve a separate class for the integrated students and the college faculty teaches them other subjects, such as languages, that are not included in the preparation for competitive exams. “The teachers from the coaching class teach physics, chemistry and mathematics, while our teachers conduct practicals and tutorials,” said Harsha Mehta, principal, SIES College of Arts, Science and Commerce at Sion, which has tied up with Rao IIT Academy. “It is, in the true sense of the word, integrated.”

“We prepare students for competitive examinations and cover most of the Class 11 and Class 12 syllabus. But students have the option of attending lectures for the HSC syllabus at the college,” said Praveen Tyagi from IITian’s Pace, which has tie-ups with city colleges.

Other colleges, such as Jai Hind, Ruparel, Sathaye and Ruia, do not have integrated classrooms.

But to make it convenient for their students, they allow coaching institutes to hold classes on campus only for their students.