ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Credit Semester System in Kerala

Cosmetic Reform

The introduction of choice-based credit semester system in Kerala in 2009-10 restructured the pattern of instructional units, the assessment tools and the grading procedures. However, its implementation caused unforeseen issues in academic governance. This article is an enquiry into the nature and causes of its problems.

With the introduction of the Choice Based Credit Semester System (CBCSS), collegiate education in Kerala has adopted outwardly a new format for academic instruction and assessment in the undergraduate programmes. It has virtually restructured the existing pattern of instructional units, the assessment tools, and the grading procedures. In response to the recommendation of the Kerala State Higher Education Council (KSHEC 2008) , the universities of Kerala introduced the CBCSS in affiliated colleges in the state. All affiliated universities in the state, except one, made the required regulations in 2009, and the University of Kerala followed them in 2010. The first batch of students admitted under the new scheme passed out in 2012 and 2013.

Being a breakthrough, its implementation caused unforeseen issues in academic governance and produced reasons to argue for its withdrawal and accuse it of being implemented in haste. As usual, the schism was an index of diverging political affiliations of its stakeholders in the state. Committed to maintaining the aura of the new system, the higher education council constituted a committee to review the CBCSS in 2012. The committee made recommendations, which the council approved, though with a few alterations (KSHEC 2012b). However, the reforms still remain a source of incongruous procedures and methodologies and reflect a set of concerns pertaining to its defined goals. The present narrative is an enquiry into the nature and causes of this asymmetric model.

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