22 Credits – How? When? Why?

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22 Credits – How? When? Why?

– Shankhabrata Nag, Sumakesh Mishra, Dhananjay Gupta

“This sucks!” “This is a huge issue for those students who are going on foreign exchange.” “Ask them to hold a public seminar and justify their proposal.” “What is the need of reducing credit limits? Isn’t it better to restructure the course curriculum?” “Credit limit at 22 is a joke!” “What about those who are planning for Minor degrees, or specialisations etc?” “There should be a proper notification about the structure of reducing limit at the time of admission in IIT. You can’t enforce this on the ones who didn’t sign up for this!”

Hope we’ve got your attention. These are just a few of the replies the SAC received when they announced the BAP’s move to reduce the maximum semester credit limit from 26 to 22. A step that came out as a shock to most, especially because of how sudden a declaration it was. The absence of a clear description on how the current process would be affected, when the limit will be implemented, or the exact reasons behind the reduction in the credit limit led to arguments and discussions throughout the campus. When this was announced, we had said we’d publish an article about the entire proposal, and here it is. We’ve put in a bit of work- spoken to students and the faculty, put together some research, and tried to answer the queries that most students have raised. It’s a long article (and took us quite some time – hence the delay in publication) with a few annexures but we hope that we manage to clear most of your doubts, so stick with us till the end. Please go through the entire thing. It is of utmost importance that the entire student community be completely aware of this issue, so an acceptable solution can be implemented.

What is the BAP?

The Board for Academic Programmes is a committee presided over by the Dean of Academics, and is responsible for the academic reforms in the institute. The BAP also consults all the departments, through their faculty representatives. It discusses the academic reforms pertaining to credit limits, new courses and new provisions such as minor degrees and specializations. The BAP acts as recommendatory body, forwarding its suggestions to the Senate, which is the ultimate decision making forum in IIT Delhi. In the 2014-15 list of members of BAP (we were unable to obtain the latest document) there was a total of 56 faculty representatives (from different departments as well as from within the administration) and 7 student representatives, both postgraduate as well as undergraduate. The SAC and CAIC General Secretaries are the only student representatives from the undergraduate programme.

What is the Credit Limit?

A student is required to complete a certain number of credits in order to graduate from IITD. The exact number is a function of the department as well as the policies elucidated by the CoS. Until 2012, the credit requirement for the completion of a Bachelor’s degree was 180. A student had to register for a minimum of 15 credits and a maximum of 26 credits per semester, which could be increased up to 28 (in two semesters) under exceptional circumstances. Students placed on academic probation had a separate set of rules.

The total credit requirement of 180 was revised in 2013, when it was reduced to encourage the students to pursue departmental specializations and minor degrees. Furthermore, the number of tutorial hours in certain first year courses was reduced, to reduce the number of contact hours and credits (Annexure 1)

However, when this reform was made the credit ceiling per semester was not simultaneously changed. As a result, students could opt for more credits per semester than the average number of credits required. This helped ease out some scenarios such as foreign exchange programmes, minor degrees, specializations, and backlogs; and in some cases helped students pursue courses simply out of interest.

What is the BAP’s proposal?

To gain insights into this regard, we talked to Prof. Joby Joseph – Dean, Curriculum. The BAP’s proposal, as it stands, is to reduce the semester credit ceiling to 22 credits. This comes with other associated provisions, which are still under discussion due to the infancy of the proposal. As a result, the implementation of this proposal will only happen next year. Till that time, departments are expected to devise a new credit distribution structure to adhere to the new guidelines, so that recommended credits in the CoS do not exceed 22 in any semester. The BAP wishes to increase the involvement of faculty advisors – the system of which will be set up and made robust in the coming months – in a student’s course plan. In such a scenario, the ratio of faculty advisors to students gains prime importance, and must be looked at with utmost care when the system is developed. Prof. Joseph said that the administration will ensure that the rules and guidelines are lucidly explained to the students and listed down on an appropriate forum. He wants to ensure that while the faculty advisor’s role is increased, a student is not forced to consult him for every minute detail, making the implementation easier.

Additionally, the BAP does not believe in strictly enforcing this ceiling either, as the problem they are trying to address is of excessive burden on a student which leads to underperformance. A student will be allowed to opt for more credits based on certain(yet to be decided) criteria. Prof. Joby Joseph has stated that someone who successfully completed all credits in their

previous semester may be allowed to go beyond the strict limit . Furthermore, those students that wish to pursue a minor degree/specialization or go on a semester long internship will also be permitted to opt for more credits, provided they present a structured outline of their plans to the faculty advisor. Prof. Joseph also said that the requirements of students wishing to explore courses out of pure interest will also be taken into consideration, and appropriate relaxations will be made to the rule in order to accommodate them, for example, a student may be allowed to take such courses(out of interest) in a couple of semesters .

Would it be possible to take >22 credits?

Simply, YES . As stated earlier, the proposal includes provisions for relaxations to the credit ceiling based on the student’s previous performance and upcoming course plan. As long as a student is able to pass all his courses, maintain a required CG and communicate his intent (of doing a minor degree/specialization or other scenarios) effectively to his advisor, the student WILL be able to take on an additional course load. While researching for this article, we came across the various policies followed by colleges such as IITB, BITS and IITM in this regard, and have highlighted their key features further on in this article.

On the other hand, policies for students who have failed courses or are on probation may be more restrictive. A student who has failed multiple courses will not be permitted to take too many extra courses in subsequent semesters to compensate, and would be encouraged to cover up their courses over a longer period of time. The administration wishes to ensure that such academically weak students are not forced into a vicious cycle of bad grades and probations because they took on extra course loads to catch up. Read on to know more.

What is their reasoning behind the change?

There were multiple reasons that were discussed after this proposal was tabled before the BAP meeting on the 8th of February. We’ll go through the major ones.

1. Drop in Credits
The main reason in the reduction of max credits in a semester from 26 to 22, is to remain synchronized with the drop in total credits required for a degree, from ~180 to ~150 (for the B.Tech degree). This was implemented from the 2013 Batch who had received only a system for their Year-1 during their admission. The first complete CoS was released for the 2015 batch as the start of a few new courses (including NEN and NDNs) and the setting up of the proposed course models required a long set of meetings and agreements. Similarly, the current proposal by the BAP would also take time to set up proposed schedules.

Similar to the old CoS (pre-2013), this proposal seems to be making a move to the old semester schedules, allowing the maximum number of courses per semester to be only 1 more than what is already in the proposed schedule. http://www.iitd.ac.in/content/curriculum-info )

2. Probation

In conversation, Prof. Joseph brought up the point of probations and how the BAP is looking into reduction of the number of students facing these conditions. He told us that , 25% of the UG students fall under probation. Probation usually is due to a relative drop in SGPA by 2 points, or a limited number of courses being passed.

Prof. Joseph mentioned that the BAP was hoping for the overall average participation of the students and wanted to improve the system in order to ensure that all students would have an equal opportunity to get out of the probation quota. According to him, there have been multiple cases when students have picked up courses just because their friends have picked up the course and at times face academic rigour as a result. This in turn might lead to the student falling under probation and affecting his academic progress.

The new system would be such that students would have to justify their need for courses they want to pick up. This shall come into effect if and only if opting for a course results in the credit count exceeding the stipulated 22. A student who can lay out his/her plan for the following semesters, categorically state the reasons for picking up the course (be it minor/ specialization/ ForEx/ internship etc.) and obtain approval from their course co-ordinator, would be permitted to opt for the course/s.

  1. Relaxed Schedules – Leading to better focus on courses at handThe administration feels that students, due to having excessive course load, are unable to complete assignments, homework and do enough self study. As a result, they want students to focus on quality, instead of quantity, which will allow them to possibly get better grades and do justice to their courses. According to them this is also aided by the credit drop from 180 to 150. They also believe that students shouldn’t exert themselves too much by picking up extra courses that they might enjoy or they’ve picked up as it is very popular among the student community (eg. DS, Management Courses).
  2. Early Completion of Degree
    Although this has NOT been cited as a reason for the proposal, it did come up in the discussions of the BAP, where it was summarily rejected. The BAP initially felt that students were unnecessarily completing their degree requirements before the stipulated 4 year period. Yet, they found that such instances were not too many, and such a situation was permissible in some other IITs. As a result, this rationale was dismissed.

Does the BAP’s argument hold?

YES and NO. The BAP proposal has been continuously discussed and debated on among the student community. The BAP’s arguments haven’t been clearly advertised, and neither have the students concerns been sufficiently conveyed to them. Both were only seen in the Facebook post released by the SAC and our interview with Prof. Joseph. After the interview, a few points were brought out clearly and the main ones highlighted. Yet after some research and tabling data available through the latest CoS we could see that certain arguments seem flimsy and in others just lackadaisical.

Credit Limit

The fixing of the credit system in accordance with the drop from 180 to 150 was one of the main reasons behind the BAP’s proposal. They said that the 150 credit move was to relax the burden on the students and allow them to pursue activities that attract them. So let’s take a look at the changes in the number of courses you have to take up per semester before 2013 and after 2013.

Semester

Civil

IP

Textile

Before 2013

Since 2013

Before 2013

Since 2013

Before 2013

Since 2013

Sem 1

4 (+Intro +2)

4 (+3)

4 (+Intro +2)

4 (+3)

4 (+Intro +2)

4 (+3)

Sem 2

5 (+1)

4 (+1)

5 (+1)

4 (+1)

5 (+1)

4 (+1)

Sem 3

6

6 (+Intro)

6

5 (+Intro)

6 (+2)

6(+Intro)

Sem 4

5 (+1)

6

5 (+1)

6

5 (+3)

6 (+3)

Sem 5

5

5 (+1)

6

6 (+1)

6 (+3)

5 (+3)

Sem 6

6

6

7

6 (+2)

6 (+1)

5 (+2)

Sem 7

6 (+C)

5 (+1)

6 (+C)

5 (+1)

6 (+C)

5

Sem 8

5

4

5

6

5 (+TTV)

4

Table: Number of Courses per Semester
* The First and Second Semester also include NLN100 and NEN100 (post 2013)
# The (+X) represents exclusive lab courses, BTPs have fallen under the Lecture Courses $ (+C) represents Colloquium (Before 2013, similar to seminars 0-3-0)

If you’re confused like we were after looking at this data, let us explain. Previously, courses such as Introduction to Department and NEN (as HUN100 0-0-4) were counted as credits. After 2013, this classification changed, making them non-graded units. Seminar courses, that one can take the fifth semester onwards too are counted in non graded units. Additionally, removal of the tutorial component from many courses reduced their credit count. For some departments, the number of courses changed slightly, as well. This resulted in a reduction of the overall credit count for one’s degree requirement. For the above three departments, the change in course tutorials would be Textile: 23 to 8, Civil 23 to 11, and IP 11 to 10 (we’ve removed Colloquium from the Tutorial count).

Add to the equation the 5 Design credits which previously did not exist and took a while to set up after the 2013 change, and we have a clear idea of where changes have occurred.

Relaxed Schedules

One of the points raised by Prof Joseph and the BAP in their release was that they wanted to ensure that the general student community has a relaxed schedule and a comfortable academic life, without too much stress.
If one looks at the CoS released in 2016-17 and the 2012-13 one, one can see the drastic drop in weekly academic contact hours ( Annexure-1 ). This become a clear view of the BAP’s move to a more relaxed schedule.

However, things become quite obscure when you add the current proposal and a few popular cases seen among the student community.

First, NDN . NDN regulations clearly say that you have to finish the 5 Design credits either through interns or summer projects or floated courses and a few other options. The issue that arises is that some departments don’t permit non-Core interns to fall under NDNs. In these scenarios the student has to pick up some NDN courses or take up extra projects in the semester in order to meet the NDN count. This just adds to the academic contact hours in the semester and the net count almost returns to the pre-2013 values.

Secondly, Seminar Courses . Again more hours of contact in two semesters (2 a week). Though it is a useful course to most, it becomes difficult to pick up a department seminar that you may be interested in. Even the Core Seminar courses are on a first-come-first-served basis which makes it difficult for students who realize the requirement a bit late. The only other way to finish the NQN credits is through cultural activities, an issue that we’ll describe in a fresh point.

Third, the BAP Proposal and Schedules . The new BAP proposal would result in a change in most Department proposed scheduled to come into the 22 credit count. If departments with more than 22 credits in a semester were to shift things around to meet the 22 credits a semester cap, then, students will have difficult 7th and 8th semesters. (discussed further in the Student Opinions).

And finally, Activities. Students take up multiple cultural and sports activities to relax and develop themselves, a move that the BAP recommends and aims to achieve. However, there are certain proposals that go against this step and haven’t been brought forward to the students or publicised. During the 8th May, 2017 SAC meeting a rather weird idea of rationalization of student events during a semester was put forth. According to the proposal, there will soon be a limit on the number of events/activities that a student can participate in, and a timeframe in which one can practice for these events. The rationale, feasibility and enforceability aside, such proposals contradict the other intentions of administration. Hopefully this idea is discussed thoroughly among the student committee before it returns to the SAC.

Probation

Given that students on probation, or those who have failed multiple courses are a primary concern of the BAP, we have found it fit to devote a separate section to this. The BAP wishes to deal with this issue by ensuring these students do not bite off more than what they can chew. Prof. Joby Joseph has stated that the BAP, through this move wishes to prevent students falling into a vicious cycle of academic probation and low grades by taking on more courses than they can manage. They feel that an already weak student will be even more hard pressed to cover up the courses he has failed, if he tries all at once. With this credit limit though, along with the involvement of the faculty advisor, the student will be able to pace out his recovery and gradually get better grades. We had previously decided to show you a hypothetical scenario of how the failed courses would work out. However, this is a mind-blowingly elephantine task, due to two reasons –

1) We are not aware of the details of CoS restructuring that departments will be undertaking over the next year. Any analysis we make will be mere conjecture.
2) There are multiple scenarios possible for a student who has failed a course, depending on their department, the semester they are in, the courses for which said failed course is a prerequisite, and the number of courses they have failed.

Let us elaborate.

The restructuring of the CoS will result in each semester having not more than 22 recommended credits. This will ensure that load is distributed equally across semesters. A

student who fails multiple courses would then be encouraged to cope up gradually, depending on availability and slotting of the failed course.
This has two aspects. If successful, it certainly ensures that the performance of a student improves while reducing the burden on him academically. On the other hand, it could result in a domino effect wherein a student is forced to take on extra academic load at the fag end of his degree/extend his degree, given the prerequisite nature of courses, their limited availability and slotting clashes. These are real problems that could very well crop up during such a time of transition into the new system.

We talked to one such student who feels he will be adversely affected by this decision. He agrees with the logic that additional credit load in early semesters to compensate for failed courses will result in low grades. But, he feels that this is a necessary evil, since it will leave his placement semester relatively free, to work on his job preparation. He feels that this mechanism of gradual coping may not necessarily work since it is founded upon the assumption that a weak student will continue to underperform, and will place undue burden on the student at the crucial time of placements, and completing additional degree requirements such as NDN, NEN and NQN.

What are the opinions of the students?

When the news about the BAP meeting broke, the SAC floated an opinion form to gauge the student’s response and collect their arguments to be presented. Many students were concerned about the inability to pursue the capability linked options, study courses of interest and pass previously failed courses on time. Annexure 2 is a compilation of these different possibilities, made after extensive discussions with students.

Here is a gist of some of the arguments that students presented. We have left out the ones that correspond to concerns about minors/specializations, as they have been addressed by the BAP.

  1. Extra credits are not a matter of force, they are a matter of choice. If the mandatory component still exists, the administration is just taking away a student’s right to choose.
  2. Some students felt that certain courses, if done in the 3rd, 4th, 5th or 6th semesters could immensely help in obtaining internships at companies or universities, and performing well in them.
  3. Another big argument multiple students made was the need to have later semesters relatively free to prepare for exams such as GRE, GATE, CAT and UPSC. This may not be possible in the new system where students have to present an outline to the faculty advisor corresponding to options within the courses of study, to avail more credits. This is something the administration will have to give a hard look at.
  1. A lesser credit limit makes it very tough for a student to withdraw from a course that they are not performing, or have lost interest in, because they may not get an opportunity to cover up later on.
  2. Removing the tutorial component is highly detrimental to students, since it removes possibility of student-professor or student-TA interaction. Furthermore, a student that regularly goes to tutorials gets a better understanding of the course and can also gain an insight into solving problems. This is especially important for weak students, and in courses where professors do not organise informal doubt sessions.
  3. Some students welcomed this decision as well. They felt that academics in IIT is becoming too much of a rat race, where students compete by taking on as many credits as possible. They feel that such a decision will put a stop to this trend.
  4. Students dissatisfied with their department choice find an escape in courses other than the ones of their department. This step will only increase their distress.
  5. Semester long internships are not necessarily something that can be planned for, due to the uncertainties of finances, visa issues and delays in acceptances from universities/companies. Many students that actually go on such internships can do so ONLY because they chose to take a course or two extra (in order to explore) in previous semesters. So, making taking extra credits contingent on convincing your faculty advisor is a little scary, since that may not be possible due to the above reasons.
  6. One student said that they do not wish to comment upon whether the decision is right or wrong. But, they feel that since the existing students at IIT are used to the previous system (credit limit = average of past two semesters x 1.25), the new policy should only be implemented for the incoming batches.
  7. A lot of students simply feel that this decision is too patriarchal. While they understand the intent of the administration, they wish to be treated as adults, capable of taking their own decisions.

How does the proposal compare to other college systems?

We’ve seen, gone into detail and debated over our college’s course structure. Let’s take a step back and have a look at the course structure in the other IITs.

IIT Bombay – The IITB system is very well described and explained in department specific documents. Their system doesn’t allow overloads in the first 2 semesters. Students are permitted to take up an extra course in the 2nd semester if they’ve failed 1 in the 1st semester. The Normal load per semester is kept as the prescribed load for the minimum requirement of the degree for that semester and credits for an additional course, provided they do not exceed a limit and a maximum of 6 theory courses. Students who are not under-probation and have a CG>8 are

allowed to take up another extra course with the limit of theory courses intact.

Depending on the overall academic performance of a student till date, especially in the two preceding regular semesters (Autumn and Spring) registered, academic standing of the student is decided. The performance in courses registered in addition to the prescribed minimum requirement for the degree is not taken into consideration while determining the academic standing. According to the academic standing there is a limit on the courses a student is permitted to take up in a semester.

Every batch (year-wise) has 4 faculty advisors, with approximately 30-32 students assigned to each faculty advisor. Other department courses cannot be tagged as departmental electives, except under special circumstances with prior approval from the department. Additionally, students doing their DD projects or BTP will be allowed to take other department courses as departmental elective with permission of their project advisor,provided the said course cannot be taken as an institute elective. ( ChE Department Undergraduate Policy Note, Latest Update)

IIT Madras – They follow a structure similar to IITB and allow students to pickup a B.Tech (Honors) with a CG criteria at the end of their 4th semester and a constant maintenance of conditions until graduation. Students are usually recommended to start electives from their 5th semester. For example – For the chemical engineering department, in addition to the core courses, 72 credits (their credits are defined differently, including the study time a course would take) of free electives (17%) have to be taken from any department including Chemical Engineering in V , VI , VII and VIII semester.

According to the departments, the students are free to take elective courses in different semesters, so that the total number of credit hours per semester does not normally exceed a given limit. (B.Tech curriculum PDF)

IIT Kharagpur – If a student has a CGPA equal to or greater than 7.50 without any backlog, he/she would be allowed to take additional subjects within and/or outside his/her own discipline to earn additional credits of up to 33% of his/her requirement for major. A student would be allowed to register in an additional subject only if he/she satisfies the prerequisite, there is no clash in the timetable and the class size permits.

For a minor, the department would enlist a set of subjects from its curriculum and prescribe
a requirement for minor taking six subjects or more from this set. The subjects would be a combination of mostly core and some electives. Students aspiring for a Minor in a discipline must register for the same in the beginning of the 5th semester. Only those students, who have a CGPA of 7.5 or above, without any Backlog, will be permitted to register for a Minor. An SGPA

or CGPA in excess of 8.0 has to be maintained in the subsequent semesters without any Backlog in order to keep the Minor registration active. (Rules and Regulations, IITKGP)

Conclusion

Whew. That was long.
Our intent behind this article was to ensure that all the facts of this issue are comprehensively documented in one place, for anyone to refer to. Since this issue came forth, we were troubled by the evident lack of communication and information available on it. This article aims to bridge that gap, and we sincerely hope we have succeeded in making you at least slightly more aware about this issue. We believe that it is only through awareness that the student community will be able to effectively engage with the administration, and vice versa. When the SAC Facebook page posted about this issue, there was a flurry of furious replies. Students felt they had been kept in the dark, and were unable to understand the logic of this decision. Furthermore, it was felt that the administration has not taken all their concerns into consideration. Prof. Ramgopal Rao graciously gave them personal reassurance, and ensured that an effective solution would be sought. We thank him for the same. We would also like to thank Prof. Joby Joseph and Prof. Shantanu Roy for replying to our questions about the BAP and the entire issue. We also thank Priyanshi Mishra (General Secretary, SAC) and Kushal Sogani (General Secretary, CAIC) for their cooperation in writing this article.

To conclude, we reiterate our hope that this article is used as a reference to ensure a perfect solution to this issue, keeping in mind the best interests of all students.

Annexure 1: Changes in CoS Suggested Course Schedule from the 2013 Batch

Hours -> Number of contact hours per week

Credits

Civil

IP

Textile

Till 2013

After 2013

Till 2013

After 2013

Till 2013

After 2013

Credits

Hours

Credits

Hours

Credits

Hours

Credits

Hours

Credits

Hours

Credits

Hours

Sem 1

22

30

17

28.5

22

31

17

28.5

22

31

17

28.5

Sem 2

23

29

17

23

22

28

17

23

22

28

17

23

Sem 3

25

30

24

29

24

30

20

24

22.5

27

20

25

Sem 4

23.5

31

23

27

22

27

21.5

24

25.5

31

23.5

28

Sem 5

22.5

25

22.5

27

23

27

20.5

23

24

27

19.5

23

Sem 6

23

25

21

24

23

27

21

25

24

27

18

20

Sem 7

23

26

17.5

24

25

32

18

24

24

28

16

20

Sem 8

18

20

13

14

19

23

19

19

16

17

14

16

Total

180

216

155

196.5

180

225

154

190.5

180

216

145

183.5

Drop

25

19.5

26

34.5

35

32.5

Drop/Sem

3.12

2.44

3.25

4.31

4.38

4.06

Annexure 2

Following are a few scenarios a student may find himself in during the course of his degree. With the new set of provisions, we wish to draw the administration and the students’ attention to the same.

Legend-

ORANGE

>22 credits due to CoS prescription

BLUE

Semester of interest (ForEx, Internship etc.)

RED

>22 credits (by student’s choice/compulsion to compensate for the above)

1. Minor – Starting in the 5th Semester

Semester

CoS Credit Req

Core Credits Req/Done

Minor Req

Combined Req

Minor Area in Computer Science + Mechanical B.Tech

Minors are the opportunity for people to get a look at and understand concepts in courses they might have an interest in or see as a way to strengthen their future portfolios. The usual requirements are ~20 credits and these fall under the OC category as well. However, even if you start early sometimes there could be times when you have to take up quite a few credits in a semester.

For example : If a student were to pursue a minor in CS and start by the 4th sem there might be issues. DS, being a 5 credit course, is bound to affect the number of credits one has opted for in a semester. Furthermore, sometimes there are other issues. In this case, Y withdrew 3 core courses over his 5th & 6th sem. He even failed a DE in his 7th semester. The 8th sem had a large number of credits to finish both the minor and BTech on time. In spite of these hurdles, he managed to pull off a CG > 8.

Sem 3

20

20

20

Sem 4

22.5

22.5

5

27.5

Sem 5

22

19

4

23

Sem 6

19.5

16.5

3

19.5

Sem 7

19

19

4

23

Sem 8

15

14

11.5

25.5

2. Minor – Starting in the 7th Semester

Semester

CoS Credit Req

Core Credits Req/Done

Minor Req

Combined Req

Interdisciplinary Specialization in Biodesign + Chemical, B.Tech

At times people decide on taking up a minor in their last few semesters, and they can even turn out to be completely different from the OCs/DEs she had taken up in previous semesters. As a result, they may have to take on a lot of course load at the end to obtain that minor degree.
For example: S had taken up DS in his 4th Sem with the vision of finishing a minor in CS. He suffered through the course and eventually dropped. He had even swapped CVL100 and SBL100 in order to take DS with his friends. This led to SBL100 being picked up in his 5th sem affecting his credit count. In the 6th sem, he swapped a core course for an OC and picked up an extra DE he was interested in. Surprisingly, after his summer intern, he wanted to start a minor in Biodesign, completely different relative to the OCs he had completed. Luckily, due to his old highly-loaded semesters, he could finish it easily across list last two semesters.

Sem 3

19

19

19

Sem 4

24

22

22

Sem 5

20.5

22.5

22.5

Sem 6

22

26

26

Sem 7

19.5

11.5

10

21.5

Sem 8

12

10

10

20

3. Specialization – Starting in the 5th Semester

Semester

CoS Credit Req

Core Credits Req/Done

Specialization in Data Analytics & AI, CS B.Tech

Some students have an attraction to courses they see being floated. Some want to face a challenge, some want to specialize in their department out of passion and some to improve their market value. For example: H throughout his degree picked up extra courses. His main ideology was that he wanted to be challenged by his courses and also strengthen his CV and its market value. On the other hand, H didn’t want to face a problem with his core courses. He finally decided, in his 4th semester, to start a Specialization so that he could balance his core/market-value. He was interested in the AI course in the 4th sem instead of his 5th sem to spur on his procedure. Though he had picked up extra courses in a few sems he completed his Specialization with a CG>9.

Sem 3

21

21

Sem 4

22

26

Sem 5

20

24

Sem 6

22

21

Sem 7

12

19

Sem 8

14

18

4. Specialization – Starting in the 7th Semester

Semester

CoS Credit Req

Core Credits Req/Done

Minor Req

Combined Req

Specialization in Process Engg., Modelling, & Optimization, Chemical Engg. B.Tech
A student may decide pretty late upon the intent to do a specialization, so much so in the 7th semester. Although this is exactly what is intended, (CoS states that OC’s can and should be used for minors/specialisations), a student may want to keep his latter semesters free for other things. Here’s an analysis.

For example: C did not complete a 4 credit course in his 4th semester. At the end of his 6th Semester he learnt about specializations. He was interested in the topic after completing a suggested DE in his 6th sem. He registered courses accordingly for the next two semesters. He also shifted his BTP topic so that he could extend it into his specialization project. Luckily he had completed most of his courses previously and could finish his specialization by lifting a few extra courses in his final sems.

Sem 3

19

19

19

Sem 4

24

20

20

Sem 5

20.5

20.5

20.5

Sem 6

22

22

22

Sem 7

19.5

12.5

12

24.5

Sem 8

12

13

8

21

5. ForEx

Semester

CoS Credit Req

Core Credits Req/Done

Foreign Exchange – Chemical Engg., B.Tech

The process for a foreign exchange programme begins in the fourth semester. Since the process is based on a written exam and interview, the results of which are not guaranteed, one cannot plan for it in advance and opt for more credits in the third and fourth semesters. The ForEx semester, of course, results in lesser credits earned. Yet, credits are more often than not transferrable from the foreign universities to IIT Delhi. As a result, with a slightly increased credit load in the latter semesters, which will be permitted in the new system, a student can compensate for the drop in the ForEx semester. Yet, they have to manage with multiple lab courses in the placement semester, which a few may find unsavoury.

Sem 3

19

19

Sem 4

24

24

Sem 5

20.5

17

Sem 6

22

22

Sem 7

19.5

23

Sem 8

12

12

6. BTech -> MTech Degree Conversion

Semester

CoS Credit Req

MTech Credits

Combined Req

Conversion of degree (IP B.Tech + CS M.Tech)

Even though by adjusting and reorganizing, it is possible to do the both BTech and MTech courses in 5 years, it will be extremely touch and go, with zero margin for error. All semesters will be jam packed, and the student will have to choose the courses very prudently. He/She cannot afford to drop/fail even 1-2 courses, as that would extend the degree.

Most departments (that are offering an MTech), have their own prerequisites satisfying which adds another level of complexity.
For example : CS dept requires 12 credits of CS courses done before the 7th sem starts, for the MTech. So a student from IP would have to take up at least 7 credits worth of core courses to get that done too. For that to happen, the student has to be sure he/she will apply for an MTech from the very beginning, and most students gain clarity on what they want to do in their 5th, 6th semesters, by which time it’ll be too late. The last few semesters argument plays a massive role even in this case.

Sem 3

20

20

Sem 4

23.5

23.5

Sem 5

20.5

20.5

Sem 6

18

18

Sem 7

15

11

26

Sem 8

12

11

23

Sem 9

15

15

Sem 10

12

12

7. Semester Long Internship (Some courses are floated only in odd/even semester)

Semester

CoS Credit Req

Core Credits Req/Done

Production and Industrial Engineering, B.Tech

This student will be going on a semester long internship in the seventh semester, during which he will not earn any credits. He decided to go for this internship only in February this year . This means that the 18 credits in the seventh semester mostly have to be accommodated before.

He is able to go on this internship because he chose to explore courses (without any plan as such), and complete a chunk of his credit requirement beforehand.
Due to the uncertain nature of such opportunities, wherein a student may not have decided their participation up until a few months before the programme itself, it may not be possible to have laid out a plan right from the beginning. Only if they had opted for more credits, like this student, would they be able to participate.

Sem 3

20

24

Sem 4

21.5

23.5

Sem 5

20.5

24.5

Sem 6

21

28

Sem 7

18

0

Sem 8

19

24

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