The Master of Computer Applications (MCA) course is conducted by IGNOU in the distance education mode. This is recognized by UGC and AICTE. There are study centres all over India where practical and theoretical sessions are conducted for this course. IGNOU sends study materials prepared by eminent faculties for this course. In total, students have to undergo 540 hours of practical sessions and 143 hours of theoretical sessions during the 3 year duration of the course apart from self-study. The sessions of the MCA course begins twice a year - from January and July. It is also the most affordable and most up-to-date MCA course in India. A graduation in any subject is the minimum eligibility criteria for admission to MCA. Although there is no entrance examination for admission to MCA and almost all applicants are granted admission, the course is tough and only the best will complete it successfully. There are a total of 31 papers in the MCA course spread over 6 semesters including practical papers, two projects and three elective papers. The final semester comprises of a single project paper which is to be done under a guide or from an IT Organization. A degree of PGDCA is granted when a student clears all the papers of the 1st year and MCA is granted after completing all the papers successfully.
Evaluation - Most of the papers have a total of 100 marks while some of the papers have 50 marks as full marks. There are two components of the papers - Assignment and Term End Examination. Assignments are to be submitted by the students after solving them at home whereas Term End Examinations are conducted by the university twice a year during June and December. There is also a viva component of the Assignments. 75% of the marks scored by the student in the Term End Exam and 25% of the marks scored in the assignments for each paper are added up to determine the final marks of a student. However a student has to individually get 40% of the total marks in both the assignment and Term End Exam for each paper to clear the paper. There is a Mini Project in the 4th semester and Final Project in the 6th semester having 200 marks each. There is a viva component in the practical papers as well as in the projects and a student has to score 40% in the viva component of projects to clear the project. In case of practical papers students are required to submit a lab manual and the evaluation is done on the basis of the marks obtained in Lab Manual+Viva+Term End Exam and at least 40% of the total has to be obtained to clear the practical paper.