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Academic Programs in Nepal

Nepal remained literally an isolated 'tiny, obscure comer of the world' for the major parts of the 19th and the 20th century and not surprisingly, a western historian visiting Nepal during that period remarked with dismay that schools in Nepal were like 'snakes in Iceland'. However, with the change in political climate in 1950, the country experienced dramatic changes in every aspect of national life. Schools and colleges came into existence mainly on the initiative of the community with or without governmental support. The establishment of Tribhuvan University in 1959 as the apex institution of higher learning, both residential and affiliating, paved the way for the growth of institutions of higher education.

Today, the country has approximately 26000 primary schools, 7300 middle schools, 4400 secondary schools, 800 higher secondary schools and 6 universities with constituent and affiliated campuses. Since the last few decades of the 20th Century private institutions have emerged in the educational scene with better-packaged and better-facilitated programs.


Not to lag far behind, some public institutions woke up to the need of the hour. It is indeed a matter of great pride and comfort to learn from independent international observers too that many academic programs of Nepal are now on a par with Asian standards and some like medicine, forestry and engineering have excelled and reached the world class.


Major fields of study and subjects offered in Nepal


1. Agriculture
Agriculture being the mainstay of the national life and economy has received due attention of the planners and due emphasis in the field of education, too. It is offered as an elective subject from the secondary school level and universities offer excellent undergraduate and graduate programs in Agriculture and Agricultural Science and Technology as given below:

(i) A four-year undergraduate program leading to B .Sc. (Agri.) of Tribhuvan University.


(ii) A four-year undergraduate program leading to B.Sc. (Agri. Science & Technology) of Purbhanchal University.


(iii) A two-year graduate program leading to M.Sc. (Agri.) of Tribhuvan University.


2. Animal Science
Sustainable livestock development and protection of the wildlife species have become the crying demand of the day for any country in the world, irrespective of its level of development. Nepal's animal farming patterns, rich bio-diversity and spectacular wildlife are in themselves an open class and laboratory for studies and research in animal sciences. The courses offered at present are as follows:


(i) A five and a half year undergraduate program leading to B.V.Sc. & A.H. (Bachelor in Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry) of Tribhuvan University.


(ii) A five year B.V.Sc. & A.H. Program of Purbanchal University.


(iii) A two-year graduate program of T.U. leading to M.Sc. (Animal Sciences).


The present state of development and the future of modem biology, biomedicine and biotechnology largely depend on the studies and researches in Biochemistry. It is a highly up-coming and prospective discipline, but so far Pokhara and Purbanchal universities only are offering it at the undergraduate level leading to a three-year B.Sc. degree.


Business Studies, Business Administration and Management
It is axiomatic that efficient quality management is a prerequisite for each and every kind of organization not only to thrive but also to survive in the modem world. Likewise, business today has become and is ever becoming more competitive, more complex and more demanding with the onset of globalization and the emergence of WTO (World Trade Organization). Hence, business and management study programs are now in greater demand and they feature as the core faculty programs in many institutions.

Most universities have revised, updated and even re-packaged their programs with a view to being able to produce business leaders, entrepreneurs and managers of change for the 21st century global village. There are many undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate programs of varied nature and duration available in the country:


4.Undergraduate Programs

(i) BBA (Bachelor of Business Administration) of 4 years duration (semester system) at Tribhuvan University and Kathmandu University, Purbanchal and Pokhara University campuses.


(ii) BBS (Bachelor of Business Studies) of 3 years duration (annual system) at TU. campuses.


(iii) BIM (Bachelor of Information Management) of 4 years duration (semester system) at T.U. campuses.


(iv) BTTS (Bachelor of Travel and Tourism Studies) and BHM (Bachelor of Hotel Management) of 3 years duration (semester system) at T.U., Pokhara University affiliated campuses and Purbanchal Universities affiliated Campuses


(v) B.C.S (Bachelor of Commerce Studies) of 3 years duration (semester system) at Purbanchal University Campuses.


(vi) BHCM (Bachelor of Health Care Management) of 3 years duration (semester system) at Pokhara University Campuses.

Graduate Programs


(i) MBA (Master of Business Administration) of 2 years duration (semester system) at T.U., K.U., Purbanchal and Pokhara University.


(ii) MBA of 3 years duration (semesters) at Pokhara University.


(iii) EMBA (Executive MBA, professional post-graduate program for in-service executives) of 4 semesters at Kathmandu, Pokhara and Purbanchal Universities.


(iv) MBS (Master of Business Studies) of 2 years duration (annual system) at T.U. campuses.


(v) MPA (Master of Public Administration) of 2 years duration (annual system) at T.U.


Post-Graduate Program
M. Phil. in Business/Management studies of 1 -year duration (coursework and research) at Tribhuvan University and Kathmandu University.


Doctoral Programs
Ph.D. in Business Administration/Management of 3 years duration (research with or without coursework) at T. U. and K.U.


5. Computer Studies
Computers today play an indispensable role in every human activity and their use and applications, as it appears, know no boundary or limitations. They have in effect changed the pace and the face of the world, the life that inhabits it and even the space that surrounds it. Thus, computer education has to deal with a new technology that is ever changing and ever growing by day and by night. Many institutions have taken up the challenge and offer competitive courses in Computer Applications and Computer Engineering.


Undergraduate Programs

(i) B.Sc. (Computer) programs of 3 years duration (annual system) at T.U. campuses.


(ii) B.Sc. Computer Engineering of 4 years duration (semester system) at Tribhuvan, Pokhara and Purbanchal Universities.


(iii) BCA (Bachelor of Computer Application) of 3 years duration (semester system) at Purbanchal and Pokhara University campuses.


Graduate Programs

(i) M.Sc. (Computer) of 2 years duration (semester system) at T.U.


(ii) MCA (Masters of Computer Application) of 6 semesters at

Purbanchal and Pokhara University campuses.


6. Education
Teaching-learning activity is no longer a simple pedagogical exercise as practiced by pundits and pedants, priests and prophets. And, education as such has changed in its meaning and form, plan and perspective, design and purpose. Today, education is expected to address not only the intellectual and spiritual needs of the individual but also his/her physical and psychological, social and cultural, economic and professional needs and also those of the society, the country and the international community at large. Commensurate with the growth of human knowledge and technology, education has become a more complex, more competitive and more demanding discipline in itself. Nepali institutions offer excellent programs in the teaching of various subjects, educational psychology, administration and even, the new, technology pertaining to education.


Undergraduate Programs

(i) Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) program of 3 years duration (annual at T.U. and semester system at others) at T.U., K.U. and Purbanchal University.


(ii) One year B.Ed. for in-service teachers with a Bachelor's degree in any discipline at T.U., K.U. and Purbanchal University.


Graduate Programs

M.Ed. (Master of Education) program of 2 years duration (annual at T.U. and semesters at others) at T.U., K.U. and Purbanchal University.


Doctoral Program
Ph. D. in education of 3 years duration by research with/without coursework at T.U. and K.U.


7. Engineering
Following the footsteps of the Supreme Engineer who, they say, created the universe, engineering is what creates all artificial life-like forms for life and life-supporting machines and devices, systems and structures that we see around us in the manifest world. With the introduction of computer technology, this Discipline has further deepened in quality and broadened in scope. Among the multiple branches of engineering, Nepali institutions offer highly competitive and very much updated programs in civil, electronics, architecture, computer, water resource, communications, agricultural, structural, mechanical and environmental engineering.


Undergraduate Programs
B. Sc. (Engineering) program of 8 semesters at T.U., K.U., Purbanchal and Pokhara Universities.


Graduate Programs
M.Sc. in Urban Planning, Structural Engineering, Environmental Engineering and Water Resources Engineering of 6 semesters at Tribhuvan University.


Doctoral Program
Ph. D. in Engineering program of 3 years duration (research and coursework) at Tribhuvan University.

8. Environmental Studies
There is no denying that the deterioration in the quality of life in this planet has been proportionate to the degradation caused by human activities to the natural environment. This realization has intensified the environmental concerns of every section of mankind from the most affluent to the deprived and from the scientist to the layman in the street. As such, environmental studies feature in the university curricula as prominent programs with the prospects of promising careers. In Nepal, the following programs are available to young men and women aspiring to build a career in development works with governmental, non-governmental or international agencies:


Undergraduate Programs
(i) One year Diploma in Environment Management at Pokhara University.


(ii) B.Sc. in Environmental Science and B.Sc. in Environmental Engineering of 3 years (annual system) and 4 years (semester system) duration at T.U. and KU respectively.


(iii) BEM (Bachelor in Environment Management) program of 6 semesters at Pokhara University.


9. Food Technology
Food is the first and foremost basic necessity of life, which needs to be tasty, nutritious and safe at all times. While this concern itself highlights the importance of this branch of study, its significance has tremendously increased in the modem times with the instant meals, semi prepared foods and cooked food items in tins and pouches fast replacing the conventional oven cooked breakfast, lunch, snack or supper. Young higher secondary school graduates from the science stream now have the opportunity of doing an undergraduate course in Nepal for a lucrative career in the fast growing food and agro industries.


Bachelor in Food Technology (B. Tech.) of 4 years duration (semester system) at T.U. campus, Dharan, Sunsari.


10. Forestry
Forests not only have eco-climatic significance for the survival and preservation of this planet but also are the source of food and shelter, clothing and fuel, beauty and pleasure for mankind. Preservation of the forests by preventing further degradation and deforestation has become a great challenge to every nation of the world. Consequently, forestry features as a prominent program in the university curricula worldwide and in Nepal; Tribhuvan University offers a very competitive program to secondary and higher secondary school graduates from science stream:


(i) Two year certificate program in Forestry (I.Sc. - Forestry) at T.U. Campuses at Hetauda and Pokhara.


(ii) Four-year (8 semesters) Bachelor's Program in Forestry (B.Sc. - Forestry) at the T.U. Forestry campus at Pokhara.


(iii) Two-year (4 semesters) Master's Program in Forestry (M.Sc. Forestry), being introduced from the forthcoming session, at T.U. campus at Pokhara.


11. Humanities and Social Sciences
This broad classification of Humanities and Social Sciences contains diverse subjects from fine arts and performing arts to archeology and epistemology. In other words, any young school graduate who has an aptitude for and interest in the study of man and his environment can take a pick from the numerous subjects offered in the university curricula to quench his thirst for knowledge of the specific subject and acquire requisite skills to practice it in real life situation. The most popular subjects offered in Nepali university curricula are: languages, literatures, economics, politics, psychology, mathematics, population studies, statistics, fine arts, philosophy and sociology.


(i) T.U. offers 3 year Bachelor's, 2 year Master's and 3 year Doctoral programs in all of the above subjects leading to B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees respectively.


(ii) Purbanchal University offers B.A. and M.A. degree programs of 3 and 2 years duration respectively in Literatures (English and Nepali), History, Economics, Sociology, Political Science and Culture.


(iii) Pokhara University so far offers only M.A. and M.Phil, in English programs of 2 years and 3 years duration respectively, and also one-year M.Phil in English Studies for graduates in any other disciplines.


(iv) Kathmandu University has 3 year B.A. and 2-year M.A. programs in some of the above mentioned subjects.


12. Journalism and Mass Communications
The press and the electronic media of mass communication - radio and television - in fact not only inform and entertain the people but also shape and influence the public opinion and thereby the governmental plans, actions and social changes. The unprecedented development in information technology has added a new momentum to their organizational growth and newer dimensions to their functional expansion and efficiency. Hence, the press and the electronic media today offer challenging and even financially quite lucrative career openings to creative young men and women with university degrees in journalism or/and mass communication. The courses available in Nepal are:


Undergraduate Programs
(i) Bachelor of Journalism and Mass Communication (B.A.) program of 3 years duration (annual at T.U. and semester at P.U.) at Tribhuvan University and Purbanchal University.


Graduate Programs:
Master of Journalism and Mass Communication (M.A.) program of 2 years duration (annual at T.U. and semester at P.U.) at Tribhuvan University and Purbanchal University.


13. Law
The study of law is often construed by the common man simply as a weapon to fight crimes or as a judicial extravaganza for settling disputes. However, it is much more subtle and much wider in its application-it deals with human rights, international relations, trade and business policies and practices, natural justice, legal as well as constitutional systems of the world. Hence, law can be a prospective discipline full of challenges and rewards for talented young men and women with social cum investigative personality. Interested students have the facility of building an academic career in law right up to the Masters program in Nepal itself.


Programs Available in Nepal
(i) B.L. (Bachelor of Law) program of 3 years duration (annual system) at T.U. campuses.


(ii) LLB (Bachelor of Law) program of 5 years duration at Purbanchal University.


(iii) LLM (Master of Law) program of 2 years duration (annual system) at the faculty of law, T.U.


14. Medicine and Health Sciences
A wise old man who harbored much suspicion about allopathic drugs, on being taken to the Arya Ghal (shelters for the dying people beside the funeral ghats on the banks of the Bagmati river in Kathmandu), whispered in excruciating pain to his friend, "God gave us life but it is the white-coat angels who help us save it and maintain it till he takes it away from us." The dying old man's admission says it all about the role and significance of medical and health sciences. However, it is not an easy sail to the world of medicine.


Apart from being promising as well as prestigious as a career, medicine is a very demanding discipline.It is also very costly and time consuming. Committed 10+2 science graduates should prepare themselves for a tough competition for entry into the medical programs of any good college, be it of the national or foreign university.


The Ministry of Education, HMG/Nepal and some foreign mission like the Indian Embassy, Chinese Embassy and the Embassy of Bangladesh facilitate the entry procedures for Nepali students by conducting selection interviews orand entrance examinations here in Kathmandu. The fact that many Indian and other overseas nationals too are nowadays seeking admission opportunities in our national institutions of medical and health sciences testifies the superior quality of the tranining and instructional standards of Nepah institutions. At present, Nepal has the following programs to offer in medical and health sciences:


15. Tribhuvan University Programes

a. Medical sciences
(i) MBBS program of five years duration.
(ii) Master’s program of two years duration as given below:

MPH (Master Degree in Public Health)
M.Phil. Degree in Clinical Psychology
M.S. in General Surgery, Orthopedics and Otorhinolaryngology
M.D. in Obstetrics Gynecology, Ophthalmology, Pediatrics,
Pathology, Psychiatry, Radiology and General Surgery.


b. Health Services
(i) 2 years certificate course in Nursing
(ii) 4 years B.Sc. in Nursing
(iii) 2 years Master’s program in Nursing (Adult Nursing
and Pediatrics)


2. Kathmandu University offers 5 years MBBS and 2 years MD course
in its affiliate campuses.
3. BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences offers 5 years bachelors,
3 years masters and 3 years doctoral programs in Medical
sciences and also a 3-year bachelors program in Nursing.

15. Religious Studies:Buddhism and Hinduism
If Nepal has the distinction of being the only Hindu Kingdom in the world, this tiny Hindu nation also prides itself in being the birthplace of Lord Buddha, the Apostle of Peace. It is thus natural that religious studies should form an integral part of the way of life of the people in Nepal. The monasteries and temple charities train pupils in scriptures and meditative rituals while the universities offer academic or/and research programs.


16. Studies in Buddhism
The Tribhuvan University offers a special one-year postgraduate
diploma course in Buddhism at the central campus at Kirtipur.

Studies in Hinduism
The Mahendra Sanskrit University offers several programs
from Madhyama (Certificate) to Bidhyabaridhi (Ph.D.) level in
Hindu religion and allied subjects.

16. Rural Development
Nepal is a country of villages and hamlets with over 4000 village development committees, each VDC comprising two or more similar villages hamlets officially called wards, as compared to the meager number of 58 municipalities. Hence, any development work in Nepal can be said to have materialized only when its impact is palpably evident on the life style of the hardy people inhabiting the sparsely populated hamlets of the northern Himalayan region, the agrarian communities living off the eroding terraced walls and the large human settlements of the southern Terai. Rural development, therefore, has now caught the attention of the donors, NGOs and INGOs, too, and can offer excellent career opportunities to young men and women with an aptitude for and educational qualifications to match with social service and development work.

The Tribhuvan University currently offers a two-year Master's Program in Rural Development (MA-Rural Development) at the central campus and plans to introduce Bachelor's Level courses in the near future.


17. Women Studies
Gender issues have in the modern times gained prominence in every aspect of life including academics. In the Nepalese society, where gender discrimination had been and has to a considerable extent been accepted as a social norm on religious grounds, gender issues need to be focused prominently in academic curricula. The Tribhuvan University therefore, has designed an excellent interdisciplinary one-year post graduate diploma program in women studies, which is currently offered at one of the constituent campuses of Tribhuvan University.

This article has been provided by Nepal Educational Directory.






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