In a bid to impart enhanced value to students, Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) has decided to adopt semester system for its undergraduate honors courses from this academic session. The university's academic council has given its nod after taking into consideration the desirability and feasibility of implementing the semester system.
Confirming the move, university's controller of examination Pervez Mustajab said, "The annual pattern of examinations is out. Now, the academic year will be divided into two terms, the end of which will be marked by semester examination. With this, a major exercise of revision of curriculum is underway.''
In the semester examination, special focus will be on internal assessments and increased number of lectures and workshops, said officials. The semester system will have more extensive syllabus and teaching methods which will encourage and support faster learning opportunities. For example, in BA (Hons), students will study 15 main papers in addition to 12 papers of subsidiary subjects in a total span of three years. In the annual system, there were 10 papers of the main subject and six papers of the subsidiary subjects. There was one compulsory paper for English language which from this year is increased to three compulsory English papers.
Apart from this, all papers will now be of 100 marks. In previous years, there was no uniformity of marks for different subjects. The weightage varied from 100 to 75 to 50 marks depending on the subject type. The compulsory English was for 75 marks but Hindi/Urdu or Modern European Languages (MIL) consisted of 50 marks. This way, total marks for a UG course for three years will be 2,700 (15*100 + 12*100). The decision to include marks of six compulsory subjects in the final report card is yet to be taken. So far, only 100 marks of compulsory English were added to the final scorecard.
Further, the number of compulsory papers is increased from four to six with semester system in place. This includes three English papers (there was only one paper earlier), one paper of Hindi, Urdu or MIL, one paper of theology or history of civilization and one paper imparting lessons on social responsibility or disaster management or other subjects made mandatory by the University Grants Commission (UGC).
The semester system, officials said, also has the scope to accommodate diverse choices for students. Another feature of the semester system is the inclusion of choice-based credit system. A student will have to earn 132 credits to get a degree. "This will facilitate inter-institution transferability of students and also take the university to international level,'' said Mustajab.
In Uttar Pradesh, Banaras Hindu University (BHU) has in the academic session 2012-13 introduced semester system.