Officials cite at least a 12 per cent increase in the number of applicants to arts and science courses

Private colleges across the city are disappointed with the decision of the University of Madras to not grant extra seats this year.

With at least a 12 per cent increase in the number of applicants to arts and science courses, officials of colleges said the university should have granted them extra seats.

“We had 20 per cent more applicants this year. A few extra seats would have helped many students gain admission,” said a professor at Loyola College.

The University syndicate, in a recent meeting, turned down requests from leading city colleges for a 10 per cent increase in seats in some courses.

More than 230 of the expected seats will not be available this year. 

“Most of these colleges have been increasing their intake every year, with every class having more than 80 students. They have neither the lab resources and computers nor teachers to manage so many students,” said a senior syndicate member.

Many have, however, welcomed the move. Nirmala Prasad, principal, MOP Vaishnav College for Women, said though the number of applicants to arts and science courses had increased this year, many of the colleges had enough seats to accommodate the students.

“The demand is only for mathematics and computer science courses, and not for pure science. So there is not much need to increase seats,” she said.

As per University rules for affiliation and approval, colleges are expected to send applications between July 1 and October 31.

“Some colleges sent requests for more seats just a few months ago, and there wasn’t enough time for a review. If the seats had been granted, they would have been sold off or auctioned,” said another syndicate member.

The principal of a college that asked for an increase in the number of seats said the decision could have been taken considering individual cases.

“Many reputed colleges might use the extra seats to admit more students and earn revenue, but there are also some institutes that genuinely need extra seats. Permission to increase our intake in the commerce stream that needs no lab resources would have helped students a lot,” he said.

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