All India Students' Association to stage rally against FYUP on December 15. Here are their demands

"As part of the new batch of students, one feels like we are being experimented upon," said a first-year student of Miranda House, Deevya Deo
Pic only for representational purpose (Pic credits: Express)
Pic only for representational purpose (Pic credits: Express)

All India Students' Association (AISA), Delhi announced that they will be organising a students' rally on December 15. This is regarding the Four Year Undergraduate Programme curriculum implemented by the Academic Council of Delhi University (DU).  

What is FYUP?
Under the Undergraduate Curriculum Framework (UGCF) 2022, FYUP is implemented. Students can choose programme courses at the bachelor's degree level and they have a chance to earn an honours degree upon completing their fourth year of studies. This curriculum provides an additional feature to students to pursue one, two or three-year courses and they can withdraw after any of these years. The UGCF 2022 was a framework created for higher education in India based on the recommendations made by National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. 

This curriculum was implemented for the academic year 2022-23 and the classes for Semester 1 under this started in the month of November 2022. Moreover, the second semester is scheduled to begin in March 2023, as stated in a report by PTI.  

Sharing his views, AISA Delhi State President Abhigyan told EdexLive, "Ever since this new batch has taken admission in DU, they have faced numerous difficulties." Listing these, he said, "From the CUET (Common University Entrance Test) process to the failure of DU to manage the four-year course, it is the students who have paid the price. This four-year course itself is a lacklustre attempt of the university to copy the USA model of education, which has proved to be a failed model."

Additionally, explaining why this rally is being held, Abhigyan said, "Instead of giving more resources to the university, the government is squeezing funds out of them. AISA has called for this rally against the injustice meted out to the first-year students and we will try to build a movement against the FYUP and NEP in general." AISA has been campaigning for the past month over the issue of NEP with students, he added. 

The students' rally will be held at 12 pm near the Arts Faculty Gate No 4 on December 15. 

Students speak up
A first-year student of Ramjas College, Swati says, "The present condition in this college depicts a contradictory picture and somewhere, it is because of the NEP." Explaining the concerns, Swati says, the number of classes has been diluted. Similarly, another first-year student, Akanksha from Miranda House, said that the syllabus has been diluted by "providing core subjects' credits to lesser important subjects of SEC and VAC." Skill Enhancement Course (SEC), Value Addition Course (VAC) and Ability Enhancement Course (AEC) are among the additional courses offered by DU under FYUP. 

Swati highlighted, "After travelling 20 or 30 kilometres, students are informed that their classes have been cancelled. Information is shared at the very last moment which leads to the wastage of their money and time." Moreover, classes for SEC and VAC have not started yet, pointed out Akansha and Swati claimed, "It is expected that they will be conducted in an online mode."

Akansha vehemently questioned, "SEC and VAC may give us insights into aspects other than our disciplines, but how will that help us in our career in the long term, since we won't get a diploma or a special certificate for studying subjects like Python and so on?" Further, Swati stressed that students are not given any choice when it comes to studying Hindi. 

Covering all points, first-year student of Miranda House, Deevya Deo told EdexLive, "As part of the new batch of students, one feels like we are being experimented upon."

On contrary, Delhi University Registrar Dr Vikas Gupta refuted all the allegations and told EdexLive that the classes are going on. Further, he said that there is no fee hike.

The students of DU have a few questions for DU and the association has listed them out. Here are the questions:
1. We are admitted to specialised discipline-based courses. However, you have only released the syllabus for the first semester. How can you take admissions for a four-year course by releasing the syllabus of only one semester? 

2. We came to the university to study the courses of our interest. We wanted to study papers which will help us build our future. Our academic credits (lecture hours per week) have been reduced from five credits to three. Why have you diluted our core paper content?

3. After diluting our core papers, you have given us courses like VAC, in which there are papers like Fit India, yoga, Ayurveda, sports for life, emotional intelligence and so on. What is the meaning of teaching us things we didn't ask for? 

4. Under AEC we have to choose between several regional languages. DU already has language courses in colleges for students who wish to pursue them. You have also removed English language as an option. Why can students not take up English as an option to study? 

5. The SEC courses have mostly computer-based options like Python and Java. Now, our colleges don't even have enough computers and faculties to teach us such courses. Will we be asked to drop these subjects?

6. Students from all sections of society come to DU. Today, if someone cannot afford a full four-year degree, they can leave with a certificate or diploma. What is the value of such a degree? What future can a student build on a diploma or certificate? Why not make the college more accessible instead of giving multiple exit points?

7. Why have you not yet adopted any method of internal assessment and examinations for the four-year programme?

8. We have seen a fee hike in the university this year as well. If this continues, many of us will not be able to continue for four years. Why are the UGC grants of our university being replaced by HEFA loans? Why does the government not wish to spend on education?

9. Our Constitution does not allow a compulsory imposition of any language in the country. Then why are students being forced to take a compulsory Hindi test?

10. While on the one hand, most of our classes are yet to begin. On the other hand, you are planning to take our other classes online. Why are we being punished for the university's mismanagement of the academic calendar?

What now?
"We have raised 10 questions to the university and are signing a petition on it. We have gathered about 3,000 signs as of now," Abhigyan informed EdexLive. 

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