The IISER Pune BS-MS dual degree programme aims to integrate the conventional bachelor's and master's programmes into a more holistic science education experience, bringing together the biological, chemical, mathematical, physical and earth sciences. It aims to train some of the brightest young minds of our country, through some of the best practitioners of science in India. Our students are encouraged to take part in research activities, thus providing them a symbiotic environment of education and research.
The curriculum of the BS-MS degrees is built over 8 semesters of courses, including laboratory and lecture courses and semester-long projects, followed by 2 semesters of a Master's research project. With the 2019 admissions of BS-MS students, the curricular structure at IISER Pune is changing. While the curriculum focuses on the unified nature of science, it also recognises that certain disciplines require a depth and hierarchy of development in the advanced stages, while some need breadth and interdisciplinary inputs for their development.
The curricular structure will have 3 semesters of courses in all branches of the sciences, viz, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Biology with a few courses from Earth Sciences, Humanities, and courses of a trans-disciplinary or foundational nature. Starting with the third semester and into the fourth semester, students will have the option of choosing two disciplines as pre-major choices, moving on to one discipline as the major discipline. Students who wish to major in a particular discipline will be mandated to successfully complete a set of courses prescribed for that discipline. Students who do not wish to choose a major discipline will have the freedom to take courses of their liking until they complete a certain number of total course credits. The former set of students will be awarded BS and MS degrees with the major discipline specified, while the latter set will receive BS and MS degrees in Science without any major subject specified.
The last two semesters at IISER Pune do not involve any course work, so students focus entirely on their research project, which they can carry out in IISER Pune or in other research laboratories, within India, or abroad. This structure has resulted in a large number of publications involving undergraduate student authors.