Choice based credit system: PU V-C floats idea to obtain 2 degrees

  • Tanbir Dhaliwal, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Oct 24, 2015 11:21 IST

With the implementation of Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) in Panjab University, students from the next academic session might get the opportunity to acquire a major and minor degree at the end of the course.

Prof Arun Kumar Grover, PU vice chancellor (VC), has proposed an idea to provide two degrees, major degree in core subjects and minor degree in elective subjects, to students. The proposal would be discussed in the next meeting of the committee formed to discuss CBCS.

“This is nothing new, many technical universities provide this facility, wherein students get a major degree for the main curriculum and get a minor degree in additional subjects of their choice. It will be new for PU students,” PU VC said.

Grover said the idea is still under work. “I have only proposed the idea and have not processed it yet. There is no formal move on the suggestion as of now. Whenever the CBCS committee members will sit to discuss modalities and make recommendations, this idea will also be discussed. I am open to it.”

After recommendations by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC), PU is planning to implement CBCS from the next academic session. It has already been implemented in universities like Delhi University (DU) and Guru Nanak Dev University (GNDU).

Prof Sanjay Chhibber, head of the CBCS committee formed for honours school courses said, “At the present moment, there is a main committee which is headed by Prof AK Bhandari, Dean University Instructions (DUI). There are sub-committees formed at colleges and university level. The heads of the universities are working on the modalities.”

As per the UGC guidelines, the CBCS provides a ‘cafeteria’ type approach in which students can take courses of their choice, learn at their own pace, undergo additional courses and acquire more than the required credits. All this is done as they adopt an interdisciplinary approach to learning.

“CBCS gives flexibility to students and open new horizons for them. While studying the main subjects, they can pursue their passion. The CBCS provides choice for students to select from the prescribed courses. These include core, elective and open courses,”said Prof Rajat Sandhir, member of one of the committees formulated to discuss the CBCS system.

Talking about the benefit of minor degree, Prof Sandhir said, “If the student is putting extra efforts by studying additional subjects in addition to core subjects, then the same should reflect in the degree the student has earned as well. The additional degree will add value to the main degree and can help the student in pursuing further education in minor subjects.”

Courses in the CBCS programme may be of three kinds- core, elective and foundation. The core course is a compulsory requirement of the student. Elective course is where the student can chose from a pool of papers. These papers will be supportive to the discipline of study. “A list of 20-25 subjects related to the main degrees will be compiled and presented to students to choose from. The committee will decide which subjects will be offered to students coming from different core courses. The list will be different for every discipline,”said Prof Rajat Sandhir. In the third course, students will be offered courses which enhance soft and communication skills.

Courses would be evaluated following the grading system, which is considered to be better than the conventional marks system.

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