The University of Mumbai (MU) has decided to close the BSc Information Technology (IT) course that the university’s department of IT runs.
The course was one of the few undergraduate courses offered by the varsity.
The decision, that is said to allow the varsity to focus on PG education and research, has instigated protests who said that it will be a loss for students.
The course was introduced in 2001 at the Information Technology department and is now being taught at over 225 colleges affiliated to the university.
In the academic year 2015-16, around 12,000 students were enrolled to the first year of BSc IT across the colleges.
While the varsity didn’t admit any student to the first year of the course this academic year, other colleges will continue offering it to the students.
In February, the varsity’s ad-hoc Board of Studies in IT had recommended that the course be stopped. The recommendation was accepted by the academic council in a meeting in May.
The course will be shut down gradually in two years, after around 120 students who are enrolled in the second and third years, graduate.
Protesters alleged that Mumbai University was moving in the direction of closing down other courses as well. “On one hand, attempts are being made to expand higher education opportunities and on the other, the varsity is shutting down popular courses. Students stand to lose much,” said Santosh Gangurde, vice president, Maharashtra Navnirman Vidyarthi Sena.
Mumbai University defended the decision. “Being a university department, it’s more appropriate to run PG courses and the career oriented courses with specialised subjects like software testing and network security,” said Leeladhar Bansod, deputy registrar (public relations), adding that MU’s Institute for Distance and Open Learning (IDOL) will continue to offer the course.
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