The University of Delhi is the premier university of the country and is known for its high standards in teaching and research and attracts eminent scholars to its faculty. It was established in 1922 as a unitary, teaching and residential university by an Act of the then Central Legislative Assembly. The President of India is the Visitor, the Vice President is the Chancellor and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India is the Pro-Chancellor of the University.
Five Departments namely Chemistry, Geology, Zoology, Sociology and History have been awarded the status of the Centres of Advanced Studies. These Centres of Advanced Studies have carved a niche for themselves as centres of excellence in teaching and research in their respective areas. In addition, a good number of University departments are also receiving grants under the Special Assistance Programme of the UGC in recognition of their outstanding academic work. 10 Departments (Germanic & Romance Studies, Hindi, Persian, Geography, Music, East Asian Studies, Anthropology, Mathematics, B.R.Ambedkar, M. I.L.) are getting grants under DRS, 2 Departments (Buddhist Studies, English) are getting grants under DSA, 3 Departments (English, Buddhist Studies, Social Work) are getting grants under AISHSS and 3 Departments (African Studies, East Asian Studies, Developing Countries Research Centre) are getting grants under Area Studies Programmes. Department of Adult, Continuing Education and Extension and Women’s Studies & Development Centre of the University are also getting special funding from UGC. The University today boasts of as many as 15 big libraries apart from libraries in colleges. The University Science Instrumentation Centre (USIC) which is now situated close to the Physics and Chemistry Departments houses a number of sophisticated and high-end research instruments. These instruments are used quite frequently by Teachers and Research Scholars of postgraduate departments of the University as well as by many other institutions in Delhi and its neighbourhood. The University has recently laid fibre-optic network in the North and the South Campuses connecting all colleges and departments.
North Campus hosts the three founding colleges of the university which constituted the University of Delhi when it was founded. North campus proper now has nine colleges geographically centred on the Faculty of Arts, Science and Law which are Daulat Ram College, Hansraj College, Hindu College, Indraprastha College for Women, Kirori Mal College, Miranda House, SGTB Khalsa College. Ramjas College, St. Stephen’s College and Shri Ram College of Commerce. The extended off campus also has colleges in Old Rajendra Nagar, Pitampura and Ashok Vihar areas of Delhi. The campus also houses other centres and institutes of Delhi which includes Cluster Innovation Centre, Delhi School of Economics, etc.
There are as many as 75 courses in University running under the 3-year under-graduate programme structure, with few exceptions like MBBS, BTech etc. Courses are mainly classified under the three faculties of the central university, including arts, commerce and science. The University offers 70 post-graduate degrees. DU also offers MPhil in about 28 subjects. In addition to these, it offers 90+ Certificate courses and 28 Diplomas. There are also 15 Advanced Diplomas offered in various languages. The University offers PhD courses, which may be awarded by any faculty of university under ordinance VI-B. But, speciality and super speciality medical degrees like DM, DCh etc., could only be awarded by the faculty of medical sciences. Due to lack of surety in quality of legal education, The Bar Council of India has issued a notification asking Delhi University (DU) to shutdown law courses offered in evening shift at its colleges.