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The GSP semester

Academic Focus

Due to the relative freedom of choosing classes (see below), there is no predetermined regional or theoretical focus while studying at JNU, but students can determine their area of specialisation themselves.

Course offer

The semester at JNU has a very interdisciplinary orientation: students can choose their courses (minimum of 4) themselves. The only requirement is that at least two of their courses need to be from the CSSS (Centre for the Study of Social Sciences). The other classes can be chosen from any other centres (including language, computer science etc.).

The head of GSP at JNU, Prof. Vivek Kumar, usually offers one course specifically desigend for GSP students: Modernization and Development - A South Asian Perspective.

Here are some further examples of courses students have attended in the past: Sociology of knowledge, Sociology of urban life in India, International conflicts and cooperation, Women and society in India, Modern Indian social thought, Statistics in social sciences, National security and international relations, Governance of cultural industries, Themes in popular culture, Energy and environmental issues, Religion and society in India, Sociology of medicine, Conflict and peace in West Asia and North Africa.

Course format

All the classes that GSP-students can choose from are also open to all other JNU students. The usual group size in optional courses ranges from 40 to 50 students. Compulsory classes may range from 80 to 90 students.


Every course awards 4 credits. Two of these are gained through end-of-term examinations. The other two credits are received either for a lager term paper, or through the combination of a tutorial and mid-term examination. The end-of-term examinations usually take place in May.

Academic culture

The general language of instruction at Jawaharlal Nehru University is English. Languages classes (e.g. Hindi) are also available for interested students.

The relationship between lecturers and students in general is a friendly one. Lecturers can be reached via email or approached in person.

Living and studying

All facilities (including canteen, library, health centre, shopping centre, salons etc.) are available on the campus itself. Student dorms are also located directly on the campus, but students are also free to choose other accommodation outside the campus if they want to (which will most likely be more expensive).