Residence Course

Home science as a branch of knowledge with scientific base has developed rapidly. It has accorded due recognition in India also. This is obvious from the fact that it has been included in the curriculum at various levels of education abroad as well as in India. Emphasis is being laid on making the subject more practical and suitable to the Indian Environment, at all levels of Teaching. Stress is being given to utilize various traditional and Modern methods to teach the subject so as to reach the common households.

Residence course is one of the traditional methods of teaching Home Science under the branch of Family Resource Management. The Residence course offers an excellent opportunity for the practical training in the management of Home. The Residence course is popularly known as practice house, practice cottage, Home Management House.

The Residence course provides the students a Home like situation where they learn the skill of performing household activities using the available resources wisely and run and manage the household to the best of their abilities. The management process basically includes the three steps, viz.

1) Planning
2) Execution or Controlling and
3) Evaluating

The students are taught to utilize these three steps to manage household tasks assuming the dual role of the residence home maker and a student as they attend the college regularly and manage the residence also. The major work performed in the residence may vary from institution to institution depending upon the philosophy, background, situation and environment

The basic tasks do not vary in any institution which include staying in groups, planning, controlling, and evaluating the finance; food, time, energy, care of the house, entertainment and the best possible utilization of individual and group abilities.

Importance of Residence Course in Home Science Education and its Modern Concept :-

According to Rajammal Devdas ,

The study of Home Management is the key to success of home making and helps to equip women to meet the demands upon them by society and the home. Home Management residence course brings forth the practical aspects of management and the Home management house provides a setting, which approximates the conditions and facilities of well managed house. Gross and Crandall describe the Residence Course as important in college teaching and it is built upon the practical application of management to a homelike situation The basic idea behind the Residence Course is found more effective to meet the needs of the particular students. Residence experience develope awareness of managerial functions of resources, decision making and evaluation of the activities. Students learn management of time, punctuality, adjustment. Read says, “In residence course students get an opportunity to make decisions and carry them out in action in an independent way. The students gain insight into managerial problems such as using limited resources. Residence course teaches the students that the homemaking is a co-operative activity and not an individual affair. They learn that acquisition of certain basic skills and tasks are necessary for good housekeeping. They come to know the importance of management of Resources and also importance of weighing values and formulating goals and making new decisions. Residence course give opportunities to the students to use resources wisely and evaluate their accomplishments. It inculcates virtues like co-operation, adjustment and tolerance by giving opportunity for group living. Since the time of World War I, the special method of teaching Home Management at the college level particularly, has been through the Resident course. Such courses were required in about three-fourths of the degree granting Home-Economics institutions in the United States. Typically they have consisted of six to eight seniors living for half term or semester in a college owned house. The students have varying degrees of freedom to organize their own activities, handle their own money, and practice choice making.


Two or three kinds of changes are discernible in the Residence

1)    One is increasing emphasis on training in decision making and less emphasis on the practical work of the household .Resident advisors reported this change informally in 1959 in a survey of various colleges, in which 84 % of the students decided their own duties and responsibilities and over half co-operated in setting up the budget. The importance of choice making as a part of a well-rounded development highlights the central core of a Home Management course. Increasing the students confidence in her own ability to make choices an accept the rightness of her own judgment and feelings, their need to be told what is the right way, their feelings of guilt when they are not able to live up to the standards they were taught to be responsible for much unhappiness and many feelings of futility (uselessness). They need to recapture confidence in their functions as women. To make her own choices and abide by them while in college, helps prepare the girl for her Home making and other responsibilities later.

2)    Another change in residence course is experimenting with smaller groups, thus mirroring the size of the present day nuclear family.

3)    A third change is developing special arrangements for married students, such as shorter periods of residence and day time residence only.

Some colleges are experimenting with shorter periods of residence or day time residence for their students. The shortening of residence period has both advantages and disadvantages. It’s practical advantages are that the time demands on the students are lessened. On the negative side of shortened residence is the need for quicker adjustment to new living situation in order both to perform effectively and to enjoy the experience. The shorter the period of group living the less emphasis is there on human relationships.

Day time residence differs from full time residence chiefly in that students go back to their usual living quarters at night.

Organization of the House

Each student group will set up its own goals, its own calendar, time plan, menu plan, rotation of duty chart, budget and so on . One group may decide that it wishes to develop skill in entertaining / decorating, while another may emphasize on development of rapport within the group. The kinds of decisions to be made may vary from institution to institution. But in every case some of the following would be left to the discretion of the group; when the free time may be taken, either by individuals or the group as a whole, the amount and kinds of entertainment, planning the work to be done by paid service, if any and determining the distribution of that portion of the budget used for flexible items, such as entertainment, meals out, reading materials and so forth.

Decision and plans should be given a concrete form so that the group members can constantly check to see that they are fulfilling their responsibilities and so that evaluation can take place.

The plan for group work should be shown by the list of activities under the heading of each job. A chart showing the rotation of jobs and the dates during which each person holds a particular job will be necessary in the home management calendar. A calendar will also show planned entertainment and free time

Each group modifies the organization of the house somewhat. The group discusses what work needs to be done and divides it into the number of jobs desired, usually having a job for each person at each period, but occasionally leaving each individual virtually free at one time particularly before manager ship.

The Home Management house differs from a family in that all members of the group are expected to be more nearly on the same level of achievement than are family members. The student entering a home management house needs an understanding of the work to be done in maintaining a home , else she will not be able to help make a workable plan for house organization. A preliminary day or two in which the work is carried on, with each girl volunteering for various types of work, such as meal preparation, clearing after meals and house care, gives each member of the group a better idea of the activities involved. Better decisions in the final organization of the tasks can then be made.

Position of Manager and Group Leader

Although flexibility in house organization is very desirable, since it offers an excellent opportunity for making decisions that can be carried out and evaluated, the responsibilities of the Manager-most important position – are established in many home management houses in order that the managerial activities be emphasized. The person in the position of manager is responsible for the smooth running of the entire household and must see that the plan of the entire group is carried out. In fulfilling this duty she usually is the person who plans meals, buys food, keeps accounts, acts as host and hostess for the group, and directs other workers. In a small group, the manager may be responsible for preparing the food as well as planning and buying it. While this combination of tasks is much more like that found in a home, it does not highlight the managerial process as clearly as when the planning is done by one person, those plans are executed by a second person or persons (directed by the planner) and the results are evaluated by the group. In some colleges one day of her manager ship during which she is responsible for all activities. This gives her a more realistic concept of the total job and shows which tasks can most easily be emphasized when there is no time to do everything.

Rotation of work

The next problem of organization, after the division of work has been decided, is to determine the order of rotation of jobs. Various decisions must be made. Should jobs be as nearly equal as possible or should light and heavy jobs be alternated? If several jobs require work in the kitchen, should they be placed, together so one gets them over or should they be separated? If Residence six students live together and perform the various duties like cook, assistant maid or helper, Treasurer or account keeper, hostess, maid, asst. cook etc. Six duties are allotted to each student and they are usually told to perform these duties.


1)    preparing tea, breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner
2)    serving tea, breakfast, lunch, etc.
3)    menu planning
4)    pre- activities before lunch and dinner
5)    laying table


1)    Help in preparation for cooking
2)    Help in serving food, snacks , lunch dinner, table setting, clearing after meals, etc.
3)    Any other help as and when required


1)    sweeping and mopping of floors
2)    dusting , changing curtains and bed sheets, table linen etc.
3)    filling / fetching water
4)    removing cow webs
5)    cleaning utensils ASST. MAID Helping maid in her duties


1)    keeping daily accounts
2)    purchasing
3)    buying vegetables milk etc.
4)    receiving and entertaining guests help in other duties


1)    To check the over all arrangement and thorough checking of all rooms ,bathrooms toilets
2)    Arranging flowers, plants etc.
3)    Receiving guests, parents
4)    Receiving guests and entertaining them.
5)    She should know the daily duty chart allotment of duties, rotation of duties if any
6)    Overall supervision of the cottage

Group duties

1.    Planning and organizing house
2.    making rotation chart
3.    furniture arrangement and decoration
4.    preparing invitation cards
5.    purchasing for cottage, groceries etc .
6.    maintaining accounts
7.    evaluating duties of each other, self evaluation, group evaluation
8.    arranging teacher’s and parent’s party
9.    performing each duty effectively
10.    co-operation and understanding ,good relation ship among the inmates


In the cottage students have to handle their own money and make their own budget for six days. Students may experience variation in their most important items of group expenditure- food and in less important items of service and entertainment.

The main important items of expenditure in cottage budget are:-

1)    food grains
2)    fuel ( cooking gas)
3)    milk and vegetable
4)    maintenance ( dhobi and sweeper )
5)    stationary
6)    rotation of duty chart
7)    time plan, menu card, remarks book

Whatever amount the students contribute for cottage shall be distributed under these heads. A simple form such as the one shown in Table A enables a group to see just how their budget stands at any given time

In the beginning the group inserts in the top line of the form the classified total amounts allowed. Each treasurer enters what she has actually spent in each classification. She then subtracts her expenditure, thus showing the balance in each classification available for later manager / treasurer

Form for checking a group budget

Total amount Rs. 1000

  Food Gas Service Entertainment Stationary Misc Total
Amount 500 150 50 100 100 100 1000
Treasurer I 100 150 10 20 30 10 320
Balance 400 40 80 70 90 680
Treas.II 45 10 20 15 15 105
Balance 365 30 60 55 75 575

Managerial Experiences of Individuals:-

As a manager, the student does more conscious planning than in any other position in the home management course, and more nearly approximates the position of homemaker. It is not to be supposed that other jobs do not involve the managerial process, but in the case of a manager, one person makes plans involving the entire group. Since most of the planning takes place before the student actually become manager, wise group organization will provide time for this planning in the days preceding manager-ship.

Each manager should remind herself of the group goals and see if her plans are in line with the achievement of those goals. If the group is emphasizing time management during her manager ship, can her plans be simplified to demand less time on the part of the other members of the group.

Planning of menus

There are many factors to be considered in planning meals. Do they fulfill nutritional requirements? Are the menus attractive and interesting? Are the foods included available and seasonal? Are the menus suitable to the level chosen? Is the time required of the cook reasonable? Is the complexity of the preparation suitable to the experience of the person who will prepare the meals? Is suitable equipment for preparing and serving available? When manager consider all of these factors and then interacting with others? Planning is far more than a combining of things one likes to eat and can afford. Another help in menu planning is a list of nutritional requirements stated in terms of practical quantities of food materials or as summarized in the basic five classification of foods to be included daily.


Whether or not the menus require too much time or are too complex depends partly upon the skills of those who are to prepare them. The following points should be taken in consideration

1) it is necessary to select easy to make recipes than the complex one.
2) There should be no repetition of items
3) Color of the products / recipes, snacks items should be appealing
4) Food should be tasty, and well-cooked
5) select such recipes which require less cooking time.
6) Use pressure cooker, mixer and other equipments so as to save time and energy
7) It is necessary to keep everything ready beforehand.
8) Select simply prepared one dish meals. It is necessary to reduce the number of foods ( items) in a given meal and prepare large amount of single food e.g. instead of Rice, Dal, chapatti, vegetable preparation of Dosa or Idli Sambhar
9) It is necessary to use foods which require little preparation or little attention during cooking.


The second step in the manager’s plans is to make a market order of the items needed for menus. This involves certain basic questions:- What is needed? What quality is appropriate to use? Where will the appropriate quality be found at the lowest price? What will be the advantageous time to purchase the item? Are the menu’s suitable to the level of cost chosen?


Evaluation is looking back to the activities .This is very important duty and is carried out by the supervisors M. Sc. Final year student , where post graduate course are there, may work as supervisors. On the other hand where only undergraduate courses are there lecturer-in-charge of cottage carries out the job of supervisors.

The duties of supervisors are mentioned below

1)    guidance
2)    evaluation of daily duties
3)    checking of menu, market list
4)    to check the expenses made
5)    to evaluate meals

•    taste
•    quantity
•    quality
•    doneness
•    texture

6    ) utilization of left over food
7    Overall arrangement of furniture etc. according to size of rooms, functional utility


T he important step in the manager’s planning consists of making work plans. If organization of most of the work in the home management house is planned by the group, the student manager will need to make work plans only For those people who prepare and serve the meals, or who are carrying out a special project under her guidance. Such a plan consists of deciding what are the necessary directions to be given to the workers so they may carry out the program desired by the manager , the manager may make additional directions which are not included in the written work plan.

In the case of a work plan for the cooks , the menus are probably the first item to be listed. However some managers fail to realize that their responsibility goes further than this, direction should be provided for preparing any unusual food. The manager may also designate amounts of to be prepared.