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Friday, March 06, 2015

Focus: Telangana Follows America On New Education Policy

Telangana education is all set to go in a new direction from the coming academic year as Universities in Telangana under the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) will be switching to the semester and grading system. 

Course of action for the execution of the scheme have been structured in Telangana along with a transition timeline that is to be followed over the coming few months till the beginning of the academic year.

Earlier this year, a three-member rule-framing committee was formed by the TS government based on references of the Union HRD Ministry and UGC; to implement CBCS, the Centre had exhorted all states in an Education Ministers’ conference in November last year. 

The committee has submitted its references to the TS government asking for execution of the scheme from the forthcoming academic year in a phased manner for various categories of institutions.

This year, in the first phase, CBCS is expected to be adopted only in state universities along with their constituent colleges and autonomous colleges.Principal Secretary of the Telangana Education department, Ranjeev R. Acharya said that the Report of the committee on CBCS has been received and the wait is on for the Union HRD Ministry that is set to conduct a workshop very shortly.

Another senior official from the education department said that the Education Minister has stated that no matter what the CBCS system should be implemented soon at least in its initial form as the government is very keen to implement the scheme from the upcoming academic year. Osmania University sources reveal that already the decision has been made to switch to CBCS from the upcoming academic year at any cost. 

In the report submitted to the government, a timeline of events like placing the CBCS guidelines in the Academic Senate and Executive Council of universities prior to its implementation is recommended. The Governor’s assent will be required for the adoption of the system. 

By implementing CBCS, the Centre and the University Grants Commission (UGC) intends to inculcate flexibility and mobility in higher education. However, in different states the execution of the CBCS is disorganized leading to not delivering the flexibility that the system aims to.

The number of course hours per week has also not been fixed by the AICTE or UGC although the report submitted had 30 hours of instruction in a week. Experts believe that CBCS lacks uniformity over the number of credits to be assigned in different states to each under graduate and post-graduate course.

A Higher Education department senior official said that as different number of credits will be assigned for each course in different states, if a student intends to shift university midway, a huge mismatch will take place in terms of credits for the student to earn the degree. 

With the UGC not specifying the number of credits for each course, the states are left to take a decision for the credits assigned for each discipline.
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