There are a number of government colleges for degree courses in the state of Tamil Nadu. Some have been started by the state government, but many were even established back during the era of the British rule. The oldest of these is in the city of Coimbatore, one of the biggest in the state. It was started in the year 1852. The aim back then was the dissemination of liberal education with a choice in the medium of study, between English and the vernacular Tamil. A number of these government colleges are dedicated towards the study of the arts subjects. While initially all were stand- alone colleges, with time, these have all acquired the affiliation of some university or the other.
The Government Arts College of Udumalpet (GACU) was established in the year 1971. It is present in the district of Tiruppur, part of the state’s Kongu Nadu region. Right now, the GACU is affiliated to the Bharathiar University, based in Coimbatore. This affiliation ensures approval from the UGC (University Grants Commission). The college has also been accredited by the NAAC (National Assessments and Accreditation Council), earning an A grade rating in it. A separate IQAC (Internal Quality Assurance Cell) has been created to this end, to ensure that all the terms of the NAAC are complied with. An AQAR (Annual Quality Assurance Report) gets generated to quantify the results.
As the name of the college would suggest, the primary motive of this college, is imparting training in the arts subjects. But some science and commerce courses have also been added lately here. The college offers programmes right from the UG till doctoral levels. The B.A. is offered in the areas of Tamil, English and in Economics. Likewise, the M.A. is also offered in those same courses mentioned, plus in the area of Tourism. There are several science areas also up on offer, here at the Government Arts College, Udumalpet. The BSc. may be availed in the areas of- Physics, Chemistry, Botany, Computer Science, Statistics, and for Mathematics.
The same set of courses are also on offer at the master’s level for the MSc course, barring in Botany. Commerce students may go for a B. Com at UG level or M. Com post that. The B. Com may be taken up with specializations in the areas of Computer Applications and in E- Commerce. The professional course of BBA has also been started by the college. This has been an honest attempt to propel this Coimbatore- based college, towards the courses most in demand now. Beyond this, students may go for the M. Phil and PhD. programmes. These are highly research- oriented, and field work driven.
Most of the courses on offer at this college, may be undertaken in either Tamil or English mediums. There is also the provision to take up a number of these courses on part time basis. Some courses are even taught on evening shifts. The entire academics at here is run by a team of four departments, each with expertise in its own area. Some of these departments, are then further divided into smaller units. The broad ones are for the academic areas of Arts, Science, Commerce and for the BBA. The college has also started its own Computer Literacy Programme, in order to spread awareness on computer usage, among those not privileged enough.
Research is also given much importance, here at the Government Arts College, Udumalpet. The library here is one of the best stocked within the region. Besides the physical books on display, it also provides digital access to en number of international academic journals for research and academic purposes. Online learning is another methodology that the college strongly endorses. That is why the GACU has also signed up for the NPTEL (National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning). The college is also a signatory the SWAYAM initiative of the Government of India. There are also a number of online platforms available on campus to aid in further development such as the NDL (National Digital Library) India.
The use of technology in education is much encouraged here. So, the GACU has developed several courses for its MOOCs (Massive Open Online Course) platform. A lot of its classroom sessions get recorded online. The campus has much to offer. PG facilities for both boys and girls, banking facilities with ATM, convenience stores and access to public transport are all available immediately outside the college campus. There is a sports field where outdoor games may be played. Facilities are also there for indoor sports. A fairly large auditorium is there to facilitate major events, at both intra and inter college level. The campus has adequate IT infrastructure. Science laboratories are well- stocked. A health centre is also there to cater to medical emergencies. Hygienic food is served at the college cafeteria.
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