BU's distance education courses may draw a blank this year, too

BU's distance education courses may draw a blank this year, too

No admissions last academic year as UGC derecognised programmes

BU's distance education courses may draw a blank this year, too

The distance education department of the Bangalore University might be staring at a second academic year without new admissions as the University Grants Commission (UGC) is yet to decide on the recognition of its courses.

The UGC had derecognised courses of the department around six months back, following irregularities in getting approvals. Judging by the admissions for the year 2014-15, the department incurred an estimated loss of over Rs 1.5 crore during the inactive year (2015-16) owing to the freezing of admissions.

As many as 3,222 new admissions were made in 2014-15 and on an average, every student pays Rs 5,000 to Rs 6,000 for each of its courses, said Dr D Jeevan Kumar, in-charge director, Department of Correspondence Courses and Distance Education (DCC and DE). He was speaking to Deccan Herald on the sidelines of a press conference here on Thursday.

Time is running out for the department with admissions set to begin by the month of June. Kumar said: “No new admissions took place in 2015-16. This year too, we are worried as they have not given us any proper information on the status of the recognition of our courses. The vice-chancellor has been following up with the UGC every two months since the courses were derecognised. However, they have not given any satisfactory answer,” said Kumar.

The department offers 10 courses. The UGC, however, decided to cancel them for not getting approvals for the years 2013, 2014 and 2015, according to Kumar. “We honestly did not know about the approvals. My hunch is that the UGC is waiting for the matter to be settled in the Supreme Court,” Kumar said.

Courses under the Karnataka State Open University (KSOU) in Mysuru were also derecognised for several irregularities. A committee has already visited the university and even compiled and submitted a report, said Kumar.

Dwindling numbers

Students’ interest in distance courses of BU has drastically waned. Figures obtained from the department on admissions say it all.