A HISTORICAL SURVEY
The Teaching of Chemistry in Loyola College, was initiated by Professor R. VIRARAGHAVA SARAMA in 1926, and began with 64 students who chose Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry as their optional subjects for the intermediate course. Laboratory accommodation was provided in the southern wing of the main building.
Professor R. V. SARMA was assisted in his work by MR. S. NARAYANAN, a graduate from St. Joseph’s College, Triuchirapalli, who worked as a demonstrator for over 40 years until his retirement in 1967. The number of intermediate students increased to 80 in 1930; 96 in 1932 and 144 in 1934. Within a few years there were four sections of intermediate classes, each containing 80 students.
In 1956 the two-year intermediate course was replaced by the present PRE-UNIVERSITY class. Soon the number of PUC students reached its peak of over 400, divided into five sections.
In 1938 the B.Sc. degree course with Chemistry as the main subject was begun with Professor P.C. RAMACHANDRA IYER as the new Head of the Department. Like Professor R. V. SARMA AND MR. S. NARAYANAN, he too came from St. Joseph’s College, Triuchirapalli on the special invitation of REV. FR. L. D. MURPHY, S.J., the then Principal of Loyola College. The first set of B.Sc. Students was 24 in number. The department was moved to a separate building. The two buildings on the western side of the main block, which at Zoology and Botany departments were then, used as temporary laboratories and classrooms for the Chemistry students. Later the number of B.Sc. Students was increased to 48. In 1957 with the introduction of the PUC course in place of the intermediate, the two-year B.Sc. course had to be changed into a three-year programme.
By far the most significant step in the growth of the department began with the arrival of REV. FR. LOURDU YEDDANAPALLI, S.J. in 1945. He joined the department early in 1946 and in the same year the Honours course in Chemistry was begun. It began with 8 students of whom 7 completed the course and wrote the university examination in 1949. The last set of Honours students took their examination in 1960. The same year the course was replaced by the present M.Sc. The following was a critical assessment of the Honours course as reviewed by Dr. N. S. GNANAPRAGASAM for the Loyola College Annual in 1960.
In 1958 the University of Madras reorganized its curriculum for post-graduate studies. The three-year Honours course was suppressed and a two-year M. Sc. programme with two parts was introduced in its place. Our first set of M.Sc. students appeared for Part-I in 1959 and Part-II in 1960. Since the system of examining candidates at the end of each year proved to be unsatisfactory, in 1964 a combined examination for both parts of the syllabus was introduced. In the Madras University, semester system was introduced for M.Sc. and the first batch of the students completed it in 1976.
The curriculum has been suitably modified to meet the challenging needs of the Indian Society. A certain measure of flexibility has been built into the new system, which enables the students to make their own choice of subjects from a wide spectrum of courses.
Formal lectures will be made more effective and useful by providing students with synopses of lectures and bibliography. Besides lectures, there will be assignments, guided library work, seminars, group discussions, projects, etc. Audio-visual aids, models, laboratory work, workshop and field experience will also form part of the teaching process. To make teaching more effective and intensive, tutorials will be arranged. These tutorials will also serve as a feed-back for the teacher, enable him to evaluate the students analytical ability and progress and promote staff student interaction.
COURSE SUMMARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF CHEMISTRY
Intermediate Science group
Dr D Suresh Kumar
Head of the Department,
Department of Chemistry,
Loyola College (Autonomous),
Chennai - 600 034.
Tel: +91 - 44- 28178200 (Ext.333)
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Over the last nine decades, the contributions of Loyola College to higher education has been highly influential and remarkable as a pioneer in the field of education that has created an avalanche of innovative and best practices for other educational institutions to inspire and emulate.
1. Educational Policies and Autonomy
In 1978, Loyola was one of the first eight colleges to receive autonomous status which helped the college to uphold its educational policies concerning admissions that aim at providing University Education in a Christian atmosphere for deserving students, especially for Catholics, Dalits and the underserved sections of the society.
2. Pioneering Programs
Loyola has been known for its path-breaking ventures like bringing forth some innovative programs and courses that have inspired many institutions to adopt them into their teaching and learning environment.
2.1. Visual Communication Program
One of the flagship programmes of the college and the only one of its kind that emerged as a precursor in the 1970s was the two-year Diploma in Visual Communication offered by Loyola Institute of Visual Communication (LIVCOM) as an evening program. Owing to the remarkable recognition from the media industry, the college started a full-fledged Degree in Visual Communication in 1989.
2.2. Foundation Course
Emphasizing the Ignatian pedagogy and spirituality, the Foundation Course was designed to inculcate values in the future leaders of our nation. The program is run by an exclusive academic unit, the School of Human Excellence (SHE), committed to guiding students in their values-centred pursuit of becoming men and women for and with others in society.
3. Research and Innovation
Loyola has a strong research culture. It is the only Arts and Science College which figured in Current Science magazine for research contributions to national development. Loyola is the only Arts and Science College in India to be recognized as a Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (SIRO) by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR), Government of India.
4. Student Support Services
A very significant contribution that Loyola College makes to higher education and society is the avalanche of Good Samaritan services it renders to the student community.
4.1. Resource Centre for Differently-Abled (RCDA)
Loyola College has set a trend nationally in stepping first to help the differently-abled students. There is an exclusive facility, Resource Centre for the Differently Abled (RCDA), established with the fund received from UGC-HEPSN and the National Institute of Visually Handicapped (NIVH), Ministry of Social Justice and empowerment, Government of India. RCDA was chosen to serve as the Model Resource Centre of Disability Services (MRCDS), the first of its kind in the nation to fulfil the needs of the Differently-Abled students with specialized digital devices and resources.
4.2. Loyola Students Support Services (LSSS)
An exclusive service unit, LSSS, was established to offer academic, financial and personal support services, such as Scholarships, Management Concession, Free Noon Meal, Special English Program, Supplementary Education, Special Coaching, Remedial Programmes, Personality Development through Life Skills, Art and Literature and a Special Assistance to Foreign Students. One of its chief focus is empowering students from marginalized section of the society especially, the Dalits, to face the challenges in life with dignity.
Loyola pays a great deal of attention towards personal and mental wellbeing of the students through counselling which is predominantly carried out by AURA, the Centre for Counselling at the college. Loyola is proud to be a pioneer among educational institutes that have professional counsellors serving fulltime to attend to the needs and problems of the students at their intrapersonal, interpersonal and social levels.
Loyola has a staunch commitment to moulding the students through academic mentoring. The Academic Staff are trained exclusively to handhold the young aspirants as their mentors to guide, support and sort out the academic and personal issues and help them complete their studies successfully.
4.5. Financial Supports
Loyola offers a tremendous financial support to economically disadvantaged students. Every semester, the college management provides fee concession through Jesuit Educational Support (JES) to students from poor families. In 2018-19, the college has issued around 1.60 crore rupees as a management fee concession to 2600 students.
5. Reaching out to the Neighbourhood
One of the best practices for which Loyola has been well-known in the national higher educational arena is the effort constantly made to reach out to the local community in total humanitarian service.
5.1. Loyola FM 107.4
The college had ventured into an exceptional service by establishing Loyola FM 107.4, a community radio frequency over a radius of 15 km. Through Loyola Community Radio, the college addresses various issues related to the neighbourhood airing a variety of special programs for Transgender, gipsies, widows, visually challenged, street vendors, slum dwellers, auto drivers, etc.
5.2. Loyola Rain Relief Service (LRRS)
Another very unique service that has set trend among educational institutes across the country is establishing LRRS during the November 2015 rain, which initiated to provide the rain-affected people living in the slum areas of the city of Chennai with food materials and clothes. Loyola Rain Relief Services had 30 staff, and 250 energetic student volunteers, and a medical team consisting of 8 doctors offering medical treatment to nearly 1750 flood victims housed in Loyola premises. Through LRRS, a rain relief camp was initiated for Post Graduate students to offer their service to rain-affected areas especially the Gaja cyclone-hit areas in November 2018.
Another exceptional venture of the college is pioneering in community service through the Outreach Program that functions under the School of Service Learning. The college had taken up around 50 slums (urban villages or sub-standard settlements) around the college campus falling under the zones 5, 7 and 8 of the Chennai Corporation. The UG students are required to complete 120 hours of community service and PG students visit villages and experience life at the grassroots level to prepare themselves to serve these underserved people in their future.
Since 1925, Loyola College has been making impactful contributions to the economic growth of the country, formation of the brilliant minds, and shaping the young leaders of tomorrow in alignment with the motto of the college forming men and women in service of others.
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