BS or BSc (Hons)? They’re all the same at KU
Students of BS, BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc to study the same course
BS credit hours reduced from 138 to 126; BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc credit hours increased from 120 to 126
KARACHI - There is some confusion in the University of Karachi (KU) over the Higher Education Commission (HEC)’s decision to continue the Bachelor of Science (BS) programme after the varsity announced that the students of BS, BA (Hons) and BSc (Hons) would study the same course in the coming academic session.
KU had started the BS programme, a four-year academic course equal to MA and MSc, after the HEC’s pressure and cancellation of BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc courses in 2007, but the varsity has decided to give more options to new candidates in the coming academic sessions so they could also apply for the degrees of BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc.
The varsity reverted its decision amid protests of the first batch of BS students, who claimed that they have failed to fulfil the requirements of the international degree and are also facing difficulties in obtaining jobs in the local market.
The matter was put before the KU Academic Council, which decided that the varsity would continue the BS, BA (Hons) and BSc (Hons) courses so that the students have more options.
However, it is unclear if there would be separate classes for BS students or if they would study with BA (Hons) and BSc (Hons) students.
It was decided that the credit hours of BS students would be reduced from 138 to 126, and the credit hours of BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc would be increased from 120 to 126.
It was also decided that the students of BS, BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc would study the same course.
The teachers of the varsity are concerned because some subjects were added in the BS programme with the approval of the KU Academic Council, but these additional subjects it were removed without prior approval of council.
The BS students of the Arts discipline would have to study some introductory Science courses, whereas those enrolled in the Science discipline would have to study some introductory Arts courses, added the teachers.
They said there would be no distinction between local and international degrees if the students of BS, an international course, would also study the courses of BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc.
If these additional courses are not necessary for BS students, then why did the varsity impose these subjects on the first batch of BS students in 2007, they added.
KU Pro-Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Shahana Urooj Kazmi said reduction in credit hours means reduction in courses.
She said when the HEC had started the BS programme, it had told KU that the varsity could set credit hours between 126 and 138, and the academic council had approved 138 credit hours.
She also said when the council approved 138 credit hours, the varsity decided to add some optional subjects, and this was KU’s self-imposed condition.
She further said when the varsity decided to run both local and international courses, KU decided to increase credit hours of BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), MA and MSc from 120 to 126, and the credit hours of BS was reduced from 138 to 126.
Kazmi said with the reduction in BS credit hours, KU had asked deans of all faculties to call a meeting of chairpersons of all departments and decide which subjects should be removed.
She said the chairpersons of the departments concerned, after consultation with senior professors of their respective departments, have prepared a list of those subjects that are unnecessary and were made compulsory after the academic council had decided on 138 credit hours for the BS programme.
Therefore, she added, the varsity has removed the extra subjects. “Why was the last batch of BS students forced to study these extra subjects is a matter of grave concern, though,” Kazmi said.
She said this not only caused ambiguities, but also increased the cost of study. KU had to hire extra teachers and arrange for extra rooms for teaching these subjects that have no link to the students’ majors, Kazmi said.
For example, she added, BS students of Islamic Learning were asked to study Environment Sciences and Statistics, both of which have no link to their major, and as a result, the students have failed to pass these extra subjects. pKISTAN TOday
BS, BSc Hons, same at KU,Students of BS,Students of BA Hons, BSc Hons, MA and MSc, study, same course, BS credit hours, KARACHI,confusion, in the University of Karachi,Higher Education Commission,HEC,decision to continue, Bachelor of Science,BS programme, varsity announced, coming academic session, KU had started, BS programme, a four-year, academic course, equal to MA and MSc, HEC’s pressure, and cancellation, BA Hons, BSc Hons, MA and MSc courses,more options,new candidates , first batch of, BS students,failed to fulfil, requirements, international degree , facing difficulties, obtaining jobs , local market,