High Cut-Offs, FYUP And More: Is Delhi University Really Worth All The Hype?

Posted on June 27, 2013 in Education

By Sonakshi Samtani:

The social network was still abuzz with Delhi University’s new FYUP, when the announcement of cut-offs for admission 2013 brought the prospective students into a tizzy. With cut offs as high as 96-98% for all the popular courses in most colleges, the FYUP wouldn’t be the only thing to worry about.

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With students and teachers bustling about the disadvantages of the hurried implementation of the FYUP, it is ironical how the sales of the application forms this year have surpassed all the previous records. While it is easy to sit back and gasp at the insanely high cut-offs, the real ordeal is faced by the 250,000 applicants who are relentlessly pursuing those 54,000 coveted seats which make them a student of India’s best university.

However, it’s time we think whether DU is actually worth all the hype it is surrounded by. With just a handful of colleges which stand out in terms of infrastructure, faculty and academics, the collective hype around DU could be attributed to the lack of quality educational institutions in India.

In addition to that, entrance examinations for English and Journalism have now been scrapped. They’ve been replaced by cut offs as high as 98%. “I believe that for Journalism, an entrance exam is vital”, says Sumedha Bharpilania, a third year Journalism student at LSR. This move surely is not welcome as it undermines the actual aptitude of the student for that course and gives undue leverage to high board examination scores.

With over 7,000 students scoring above 95% in 2013, one can’t blame just the colleges for soaring cut-offs every year. It is time we reflect on the Indian education system and its ethos. With state and national boards becoming increasingly lax in correction patterns with each passing year, and with a curriculum that encourages rote learning, it is hard to imagine a bright future for the education system if it continues functioning this way.

Hacking into the Indian education system’ by Debarghya Das, highlights the adulteration in ISC marking pattern. A statistical representation of the marks scored by the 65,000 students who appeared for the examination shows that the exact same numbers were missing from everybody’s results in all the subjects. Sure it is a shocking revelation, but it is not that we were completely unaware of the unreliable marking patterns.

But this is not all, adding to the plight of the prospective students is the much criticized reservation system. While it makes sense to reserve seats for those belonging to economically underprivileged backgrounds, but assuming that all the members of those reserved categories would be unable to finance their education is nothing but a flawed generalization. Moreover, certain top colleges reserve 50% seats for students belonging to particular religious backgrounds, even if their score is as low as their share of seats, while their counterparts deal with a very difficult admission process.

Reservation based on religion/caste is not justified and completely unacceptable. For a secular country like India, such a system is hypocritical. For on one hand we incorporate virtues of equality in our constitution and then subject our students to a completely incongruous system.

The need of the hour is more and better educational institutions, both for secondary and higher studies. An organized education system which complements the aim of wholesome education and all round development of the students, contrary to the one which promotes rote learning.

It is therefore, imperative to work on the contents of our education system first. Once it is done, an appropriate structure wouldn’t be very far away from falling in place. As of now, Admission 2013 is quite literally a mission.

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