How many things have we learned in our school life expecting to use them in reality which, we found out were in fact, a total waste of brain space?

From a very young age, an average Indian student is fed a healthy diet of multiplication tables, and an abundant number of formulas that they tend to cram up and carry with them for a period of more than 12 years. We adhere to these concepts for so long that the very idea of education becomes restricted to the ability to score well and not flunk, doesn’t matter if we actually learn something from it or not. Hence, eventually losing the ability to question the system.

I am sure we all believed at the age of 12 that by the looks of it, we would be using geometry on a daily basis. Yet, another day has passed and how much Pythagoras Theorem have you applied in real life? At some point in high school, we all get into geometric theorems and proofs, comparing triangles to other triangles, and a few other things that the Greeks had already figured out for us. But when it comes to applying them in real life, people just don’t encounter triangles in the wild pleading to be proved identical. Let us not forget how much we struggled with long division back in fourth grade. It was added to our math curriculum in an era when people smoked for their health and calculators were rare. Basically, the only people who use long division now are fourth-grade teachers teaching it to fourth graders.

Archimedes, the famous Greek Mathematician that contributed his fair share of principles and theorems, was considered highly intellectual. Lesser-known truth about his life is the cause of his death. When his city was captured and there were rage and terror everywhere, he was killed by a soldier, who mistakenly thought, the mathematical instruments Archimedes was carrying were valuable weapons and thus, killed him with his sword in anger. Which tells us how there’s actually a quite thick line between Maths and intelligence.

Our education system judges the mental level of students by seeing how accurate they are with math. Doesn’t matter if it’s anyone’s cup of tea or not. And it’s just not mathematics. We wouldn’t have struggled with History so much if instead of Jhum cultivation, or about how different rivers were named, we were made to read chapters on the stories written by the great Sadat Hasan Manto, who did not write words, but wrote emotions, covering every detail of those dark times, how various people of the society were affected differently.

Ironically, the word “Education” comes from the Greek word “Edukos”, which means ‘To Draw Forth From Within’. How very different from the prevailing schooling system which seeks the child’s soul to conform to the demands of a consumer-driven society, leaving us hackneyed. Imagine an education system so abominable that we make extra coaching, a thriving multimillion rupee industry with enough money to buy front-page ads, billboards and bus wraps.

When it’s said that education is the solution to various catastrophes of the world, it certainly doesn’t indicate what we studied about Mitochondria being the powerhouse of the cell. Rather, it’s about educating and making the people aware about inequality, cyber crimes, taxes, poverty, homosexuality, and numerous other visions that give us the power and confidence to question the issues prevailing in the world. Seeing unhealthy patterns in the previous generations and deciding those patterns end with us is an extremely powerful decision which is, in fact, the basic expectation from this generation, something that can only be achieved from a liberal education system that doesn’t produce mules.

Now to answer the question, will you ever use Pythagoras theorem in real life? Dissentious. Unless one plans on making a career in mathematics, about which, are you sure?


Feature Image Credits: Pinterest

Avni Dhawan

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The University of Delhi made some changes with the calculation of best of four percentage for both B.Com (Hons.) and B.A. (Hons.) Economics which has severly impacted the students.

University of Delhi (DU) in a monumental move has announced that Class 12 marks in Mathematics will now be mandatory in the best of four (BoF) for students aiming to study B.A. (Hons.) Economics from the academic year 2019-2020. Students aspiring to pursue B. Com (Hons.) will also require 50% marks in Maths to stand eligible for the course.


Admissions 2019- Maths Mandatory in Best of Four for Economics Hounours (1)   Admissions 2019- Maths Mandatory in Best of Four for Economics Hounours 2


Earlier, the prerequisite for these two sought-after courses was to pass in Mathematics but this move has created another hurdle for students.

Devyani Arora, a B. Com (Hons. ) student commented, “The 50 percent marks requirement in Mathematics is essentially an important caveat for admission to B. Com (Hons.) simply because a lot of students would take mathematics as their additional subject and get the passing requirement, just for the sake of securing an admission in DU in the honours course. However, the mathematics taught in Class 11th and 12th is extremely important in Business and is a core subject in the course too, but there are barely students in class who actually know the subject.”

While this announcement has its positives, what is being criticised is the timing of this news. With the admission process now in its first step, for several the aspirations of studying at the prestigious University will reach an uncertain step. Several ex-students are also protesting against this move.

Vidhi Arora, a B.A. (Hons.)  Economics student of Kamala Nehru College commented, “DU admissions are not as wholistic as it should be considering it solely focuses on marks. But this is a good move because if you are studying Economics, you need a good grasp of maths otherwise you will face difficulties in many concepts. This will affect percentages, obviously, but from a more long-term view, it is best.”

In a situation like this it is important for students applying to not panic and plan their next course of action. One should maximise options for later by keeping an open mind in selecting courses in the undergraduate application. If there is a significant drop in the best of four, the previous percentage can open doors to many other courses and colleges. Those holding onto their course should, with full composure, wait for the successive cut-off lists to be released. These two courses being a popular choice will be available in several colleges so keep an eye open and mind for all colleges in both the campuses. Furthermore, aspiring students should remember that lakhs of other students will also face this same obstacle, and which could reflect in the cut-offs as they are released.

Image Credits: DU Bulletin Board

Shivani Dadhwal

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There are seven vocational courses offered by the University of Delhi out of which for four of the courses, Mathematics has been made a compulsory subject: printing technology, web-designing, software development and banking operations. From this year, students opting for vocational courses in DU will have to include Mathematics in their best of four percentages. Hence, for calculating the best of four percentages, mathematics will have to be included along with one language and two other elective subjects. However, it is not compulsory to include the subject for B.Voc healthcare management, retail management and information technology. Some of the regular courses where it is a compulsory subject are Economics (Hons), B.Com (Hons) and Computer Science (Hons), among others.

Started in 2016, B.Voc programmes have been designed by the University Grants Commission (UGC) as per the National Skill Qualification Framework of the Ministry of Skill Development, emphasising on skill-based education in consultation with the National Skills Development Corporation.

It has multiple entry and exit points, except that the programme is like any other regular course. Students have the option to leave after the second and fourth semester and will be awarded a diploma or an advanced diploma accordingly.

Vocational subjects will be treated as academic subjects for those opting for the programme. Students who have passed related vocational subjects and wish to include them in the best of four will get two per cent advantage. An additional advantage of one per cent is given if a candidate has studied more than one related vocational subject, included in the best of four calculation.

For other courses, inclusion of vocational subject in the best of four will lead to a 2.5 per cent deduction in percentage. Officials said that in the academic council meeting, to be held on June 20, teachers will discuss the UGC letter which states that the “B.Voc degree should be considered equivalent to other degrees”. The letter also states that the “degree be considered for competitive exams and allow students trans-discipline vertical mobility”.

Colleges offering B.Voc courses are Jesus and Mary College, Kalindi College, College of Vocational Studies and Ramanujan College. Admissions to these courses are done on the basis of cut-offs released by the colleges. The colleges have 350 seats.

Image Credits: DU Beat

Radhika Boruah

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After the brouhaha over the fairytale Economics result, Delhi University has now declared the first year semester results of three major Science streams. Students have, in general, performed commendably in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics. However, there is an obvious disappointment on the part of students over no one achieving a 99 as expections had sky-rocketed following the Economics scores.

The Mathematics results were declared on 31st December, while those of Physics and Chemistry were declared on the 2nd day of the new year. The colleges that have performed best overall are Hans Raj, Hindu, Miranda House, St. Stephen’s and Maitreyi.

A student of Hans Raj College has topped Physics honours with a 92%, with the overall result of Hans Raj itself being the best. Close contenders were Hindu College, followed by St. Stephen’s and Miranda House.

For Chemistry, the highest score is again a 92%, obtained by a student of Hindu College. The top colleges for Chemistry are Hindu, Hans Raj and Miranda with only Sri Venkateswara in South Campus that has managed to come close. Mathematics Honours saw a highest score of 98%, a New Year’s Eve delight for the Maths departments across DU that have been struggling to improve results over the past two years. The topper belongs to Lady Sri Ram College, however the best overall result was yet again bagged by Hans Raj College.

The subject saw a remarkably good set of marks being obtained by South Campus students as well, with JMC, Gargi and Sri Venkateswara in the lead. While a considerable number of students have performed exceedingly well in these subjects, there are also substantial number who would be required to take some exams again.

Declaration of Bsc.(Hon) Math Part-1 results propelled a huge wave of shock and disappointment amongst the DU students. A shocking 37% of the students pursuing this course failed in the annual exam conducted in the month of April-May 2010. Moreover, another 9% have provisionally been promoted to Part-II on the condition that they would have to clear main course-I papers in a second attempt.

According to valid sources, the new syllabus and changes in course structure last year have been held responsible for the high failure rate. “It had to do with the new course. There are no previous questions or set guidelines for the students. Earlier students used to depend a lot on guides and notes. Last year we had 100% pass percentage and we are very concerned about the 3 students who couldn’t manage to qualify the papers,” said Jyoti Darbari, Mathematics in-charge at LSR.

The colleges which suffered the most with a downfall in results where 97 out of 133 students from Shivaji College, 25 out of 28 students from Satyawati College and 30 out of 55 students from Rajdhani College failed. Amongst other colleges like Deen Dayal Upadhyaya and Zakir Hussain (day) College, 39 out of 60 and 21 out of 56 students failed, respectively.

Even some prestigious colleges of North Campus had dismal results. 16 out of 41 from KMC, 15 out of 39 from SGTB Khalsa and 7 out of 47 students from St Stephen’s couldn’t manage to clear the exams.

This can adversely affect the number of applicants for Bsc. Math for the upcoming year since they too seem to be intimidated by the results. “I still have second thoughts about taking up Bsc. Math instead of any other course in DU. There’s too much uncertainty and pressure regarding the course and results,” said a fresher during her second week in LSR College.

The new course was revised in 2009 after a net time span of 19 years, where both the courses BA Math and Bsc Math were clubbed together into one syllabus in order to upgrade and enhance its application at a higher level. Hence, the new course structure is said to be well revised and the high rate of failure is believed to be the teething trouble which is generated during the transition period of the course structure.

However, the Professors are giving a reassurance of a better pattern and guideline for the upcoming year.