The number of students opting for B group (physics, chemistry and biology) has more than doubled in the last five years, with engineering loosing its sheen. However, the number of students in A group (physics, chemistry and mathematics) has registered a negative growth of 12% in the same period.
This is the first time where students choosing biology has outnumbered those with mathematics. Ever since the semester system was introduced in 2009, it was A group students who were more in number than B group students.
The change in scenario will give a boost to the applied science faculty. The shift in the preference is because the engineering faculty is losing its preference among the students. Every year, over 20,000 seats in engineering are falling vacant. Looking at this figure, there will be more seats which will remain vacant once these students pass out in 2016.
The move will also be beneficial for the self-financed colleges which have been set up as they will rush for admission. Against the 76,000-odd students, there are only 10,000 odd medical and para-medical seats in the state. The officials said that this may by 2016 increase by about 1,000 seats.
Rakesh Patel, who has taken admission into a B group in first semester, said, "Students are not getting desired placements and several engineers are still searching for jobs despite graduating before five years. However, after completing B.Sc and M.Sc a person can go in for teaching and also for research oriented courses."
Hasmukh Hingu, former chairman of GSHSEB, said the choice of the student has changed as they are not getting good job opportunities and are rendered jobless. There is also a saturation in the job market. In 2009, there were only 18,000 students in B group.
Gujarat University vice-chancellor M N Patel said, "There are only 10, 000-odd seats in medical and para-medical professional courses, the increase in number of students indicates that the students might be inclined to join applied sciences. This trend will see more students in science colleges. In 2009-10 there were seats which were lying vacant in science colleges."