Teaching staff crunch in 2 DU depts, students suffer

Every dept should have 8 profs, 6 readers, 4 lecturers, says UGC

Students are suffering due to acute shortage of teachers in two Delhi University departments.

While Philosophy has around three permanent faculty, the Department of Modern Indian Languages and Literary Studies (MILLS) has a problem of less number of experts to teach the papers.

The research scholars –MPhil, PhD students – are the worst affected due to the shortage of teaching faculty.

“All the faculty are not interested in teaching comparative studies as they have a background of one regional language,” said Prof A Mariappan, head of the department of MILLS.  He further explained that the department which teaches various Indian languages and its background, papers on folk lores, arts and aesthetics amongst others topics has a teaching faculty which does not specialise in other required papers of literary studies.

“Most of the teaching faculty teach mono-regional subjects. They know one Indian language and its background. Only few senior members are experts in teaching the overall comparative Indian literature required for teaching the research scholars,” he said.

The department which also had late activist Prof Indira Goswami as its teaching faculty, does not get a lot of students and sees students dropping out primarily due to this reason.

“There are five students in the first year of Masters and eight to ten students in the second. MPhil and PhD students are very few in numbers. The university has very recently posted recruitment advertisements for two teaching faculty who have studied comparative literature before. Also we have some guest faculty to teach few papers,” he added.

UGC guidelines

According to the University Grants Commission (UGC) guideline, every department in the university should have eight professors, six readers and four lecturers. While MIILS has two professors and the rest are on ad hoc basis, some associate and assistant professors are in the teaching faculty.
Similar scarcity of permanent faculty, which has the authority to supervise MPhil and PhD level students, is in the department of Philosophy.

One of the associate professors of Philosophy, on conditions of anonymity, informed that though the students come in plenty for the Masters course, the research scholars face problems due to lack of experts on the topic of their choice. “The students have to limit their scope of choosing topics due to the limited expertise of the teaching faculty on a given topic. So the students have to decide on topics which the professors know about. Philosophy, as a subject, has so many branches and new topics to explore, but due to non-availability of faculty, such topics remain untouched,” she said.

According to the professor, there are two-three permanent faculty in the department. A senior official in the university said efforts are going on to increase the number of teaching faculty. “It is going on, it is a gradual process,” said the official. The university has some 4,000 teaching seats vacant.

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