Mysuru: The contentious issue of minimum marks for admission to post-graduation in English sparked off a row at the Academic Council meeting held at Crawford Hall yesterday.
University regulations has fixed 40 percent marks for SC/ST and 45 percent marks for general category students to appear for Common Entrance Test to join any course in the University. However, when it comes to Department of English, the cut off marks has been fixed at 45 percent for SC/ST and 50 percent for general category students.
This has resulted in poor admissions especially from rural and poor students. This issue was brought to light by Chamarajanagar PG Centre Director Prof. Shivabasavaiah at the meeting.
To benefit the SC/ST students from Chamarajanagar district, MA in English was started in 2013-14. It continued till 2017. However, in 2017 and last year, since many students could not get marks eligible to gain admissions to the course, it was not possible to continue this department. Students had also complained about this, said Prof. Shivabasavaiah.
In the Manasagangothri Post Graduate campus, admissions for all the 65 subjects have been fixed at 40 percent for SC/ST and 45 percent for general students. However, only in English Department, according to the Board of Studies, the admission criteria have been fixed at 45 percent for SC/ST and 50 percent for general category students.
Prof. Shivabasavaiah also pointed out that many rural students who had scored 44 marks in SC/ST category and 49 marks in general category had complained that they had missed a chance to join English course due to the cut off marks. Though this issue was brought to the notice of the Board of Studies several times, it was ignored, he added.
However, the Dean Faculty of Arts Prof. Mahadev objected to this line of argument. According to him, the main reason for this is the lack of feeder colleges that offered BA courses.
He also strongly reiterated that the quality of students could not be comprised because of lack of students. The idea of reducing the cut off marks just to increase the intake is against the autonomy of the Board of Studies and besides the decision taken earlier will be in force for three years and this cannot be withdrawn at any cost, he added.
But Prof. Shivabasavaiah’s argument found more takers at the meeting as many members supported his point of allowing students from backward areas to come to the mainstream instead of denying them the opportunity of pursuing higher education.
Vice Chancellor Prof. G. Hemantha Kumar, who chaired the meeting, finally intervened and said that a sub-committee would be constituted to look into the matter and a decision will be taken at the earliest in this academic year itself.
M.Sc. Yogic Science Course: The Academic Council has approved to set up the Department of Yogic Science.
The Department will come up at the new building of Department of Law and the eligibility criteria for the course will be any degree. There is no age limit for this course. However, the entrance examination is mandatory as per the University guidelines and there are 40 seats available.
The strength of the faculty will be seven and they will have M.Sc, Ph.D, NET (National Eligibility Test) or SET (State Eligibility Test) as per UGC norms. The University has constituted a Yogic Sciences panel to prepare a report and it has prepared a syllabus also.
Physical Education: The University is also planning to start Physical Education and Sports Sciences in under-graduate courses. But, first it will form a committee to look into the formalities of the course.