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Calcutta University adjudged best university in India by global agency: VC

Calcutta University PG seats vacant, especially in math; new counseling initiated

November 24, 2023
Mita Mukherjee

Even as postgraduate admissions in Calcutta University for 2023-24 closed last month, the university on Thursday decided to hold fresh counselling of students — for the fourth time — after noticing many seats lying vacant in the courses, particularly in the state-aided colleges in Kolkata, sources in the university said.

The highest number of vacancies is in M.Sc mathematics in which more than 50 per cent seats are lying vacant, which according to veteran teachers is an “alarming” trend.

In other core science subjects including, physics, chemistry, statistics, economics, the vacancies vary between 40 to 60 percent in different colleges, according to a senior official of the university.

“The crisis of seats lying vacant in certain subjects is not new in Bengal. The trend started way back in early 2000 since when we have been noticing very few takers in certain subjects like economics and philosophy. This has definitely been a matter of concern, but this time we are surprised to see that not even 50 percent of the seats in mathematics are filled in colleges where we have granted permission to run postgraduate courses in mathematics,” the university official told EducationWorld.

According to him, there were less takers in mathematics even last year, but this time the vacancies have increased manifold in the subject as well as in physics,chemistry, statistics and economics, the official said.

“The postgraduate courses started on October 30. After noticing that nearly half the seats in math and some other subjects lying vacant even after three rounds of counselling, we decided to conduct the fourth round to ensure that at least some vacant seats get filled up. We have issued a notice today informing students about the fresh counselling,” Amit Roy, secretary of science faculty of Calcutta University told EducationWorld.

At Lady Brabourne College, an institution run directly by the state higher education department the number of vacancies are few in the general category, but the vacancies are quite high in the reserved seats.

“We are noticing an increasing disinterest among students to study physics, chemistry and also mathematics. Mathematics plays crucial role in our lives and so we need to encourage students to pursue these courses,” said Siuli Sarkar, principal of Lady Brabourne College.

At least 38 undergraduate colleges affiliated with Calcutta University offer postgraduate courses. Several colleges said the number of enrolment has not even touched the double digit mark in the postgraduate courses.

The seats in the postgraduate courses offered by the university itself are already filled, officials in the science and arts faculty departments said.

However, all the seats in almost every subject in the postgraduate courses in the private universities are filled up, officials said.

“The admission process in our postgraduate courses started long ago and classes are going on in full swing. We have no vacant seats in the postgraduate courses this time,” said Dhrubojyoti Chatterjee, vice-chancellor, Sister Nivedita Univetsity, a private university.

Suranjan Das  vice-chancellor of Adamas University, another private university, too said that there were adequate takers of seats in all the postgraduate courses in his university this time.

According to several teachers one of the factors responsible for the large vacancies in the college may be the exodus of students from Bengal, a trend that started more than a decade ago. Students started moving out of Bengal for better opportunities in job market and placements after completing the courses.

“It is for the same reason, students in Kolkata are showing more interest to study in private universities. Students are required to pay much more for studying in a private institution. They are choosing the private institutions with the hope to manage a job after completing their studies,” a state university vice-chancellor said

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