BENGALURU: Once, one of the most sought-after courses — Masters in Computer Applications (MCA), is now facing the threat of closure in the state.As per information from the Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU), at least 10 affiliated colleges have requested for withdrawal of the course in the last three years due to less demand.
Even the admission data for the last three years shows how the demand for the course has reduced.
According to the statistics from VTU, at least 50% of the seats were left vacant in the last three years for MCA, both at VTU post graduate centres and affiliated colleges.Considering the decline in admissions, the VTU authorities have decided to write to All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to reduce the course duration to two years instead of three. “All other Masters courses are for two years but only MCA is for three years. This is also one of the disadvantages as students opt for a similar course which can be completed in a shorter duration,” an official from VTU said.
Vice Chancellor Prof Karisiddappa said, “The admission and unfilled seat status is being sent to AICTE every year. This time, we will also write about bringing down the course duration.”According to Karisiddappa, AICTE allows admissions to MCA even under lateral entry scheme where one can directly get admission into the second year and get their MCA certificate in just two years. “This is also one of the issues that needs to be addressed. If it is lateral entry or through direct admission, it should be of the same duration,” he said.
Experts say MCA was a stop-gap arrangement made in the country when IT industry was booming.
“There was a time when demand was more than the supply. The engineering graduates in computer related courses were less in the country, and that is when MCA was launched. Any graduate with science background will be eligible to take up the course,” explained the principal of a city based engineering college.
When VTU authorities were asked whether they prefer scrapping the course, Karisiddappa said, “I don’t think scrapping it is a remedy. If colleges want to drop the course, then we have to accept it. But, being a university we need to run the course and think about alternatives.”
Even the candidates who have done MCA feel that they are not treated at par with engineering graduates. “I did my MCA from one of the prime colleges in the city. But, to get a job I had to do an additional computer course and even the salary which I get cannot be compared with those who have done engineering,” said Spoorthi who completed her course in 2016.