Academic Freedom at IIT Kanpur

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IIT Kanpur is known to offer a lot of academic freedom to tits students. There are some institute core courses which all students must do and some compulsory courses specific to each departments. Other then them, a student can choose to do any course if he/she meet the per-requisite for the course.

Major Aspects of academic freedom

Following are the major aspects of academic freedom at IIT:

  1. Branch Change IIT Kanpur provides provision to B.Tech/B.S. students for changing branch to any other B.Tech/B.S. branch on the basis of some constraints given in the UG Manual of IIT Kanpur. IIT Kanpur has relatively liberal rules and criteria for branch change. Approximately, around 50 students' branch get changed every year.
  2. Minors Each department at IITK offers a few minors wherein the students doing the minor can choose 2-3 courses from the department. The criterion for giving minors to the applicants is based on CPI.
  3. Double Major A student can registered for undergraduate program in discipline 'X' and doing double major in discipline in 'Y" can second undergraduate degree in discipline 'Y', by spending just one year extra. Each departments gives only a few students double major in their department and the criterion for selection is chosen by the department.
  4. Open Electives (OE) All department's templates prescribes the student to choose 6-7 open elective, wherein the student can choose any course from any department (including own department) for the open elective. The level of courses can be UG/PG.
  5. Department Electives (DE) All department's templates prescribes the student to choose 6-7 department elective, wherein the student can choose any course from his/her department for the DE.
  6. Course Drop A student has the freedom to drop the course for which he/she has been registered. Though, if the course is compulsory then he/she has to do it in any of his next semesters.
  7. Student Exchange Programs At IITK, in order to help a student to broaden his/her horizon and gain course/work experience, he/she may be permitted to proceed to other academic institutions in India or abroad as a non-degree student. On return, he/she may apply for waiver with an official transcript of the grades obtained by him/her at the selected institution as a non-degree student and other documents/material that the concerned DUGC may require for evaluation. The DUGC will determine, by whatever means it deems fit, the equivalent courses (credits) and/or requirements for which the student may be given a waiver in his/her undergraduate programme at the Institute.
  8. HSS Courses Humanities and Social Sciences department of IIT-Kanpur offers various courses for overall intellectual and social development of students. It is indispensable part of the curriculum since July 1963. All undergraduate students are supposed to do 5 HSS-Courses in their overall stay of 4 years. Out of these five courses, two are first level courses while others are second level HSS courses.
  9. Converting to Masters Student can convert their B.Tech/BS programs to M.Tech/MS program in their 6th/7th semester.
  10. Summer Semester IIT Kanpur offers a Summer semester , which is held with the intention of helping students having backlogs. Those students who are planning for a dual-degree or double major can also get the benefit of finishing courses earlier. Student can choose courses up-to 22 credits in the summer term.


Eligibility, Procedure, Credit Transfer and Waiver for IITK, UG non-degree (exchange) students
JEE Counseling: Changes in IIT Kanpur

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