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Deccan Herald | Prakash Kumar | DH News Service | New Delhi | Mar 9 2018 |
All standalone institutions will be regulated by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) from this year.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has given up its authority to regulate these institutions, which are categorised as those offering diploma level courses in various streams. Higher education institutions, which are not affiliated to any university but recognised by various councils or ministries of the government, as well as polytechnics fall under the category of standalone institutions. The decision to hand over the responsibility of regulating these institutions to the AICTE was taken by the UGC at its recent meeting, ending confusion over jurisdiction of the two regulatory bodies to regulate various types of standalone institutions as a major chunk of these institutions offer teachers’ training courses. A committee of experts, set up to review the rules for allowing higher education institutions offer distance education in various streams except in engineering, had recommended placing all standalone institutions under the jurisdiction of the AICTE.
Power to regulate
“The AICTE has a provision in its Act which vests authority in it to regulate standalone institutions,” a UGC official said. There are 11,669 standalone higher education institutions. Of them, 3,672 institutions offer diploma courses in technical education, 4,308 teachers training, 3,077 nursing, 433 post-graduate diploma in management and 179 institutions are functioning directly under various government bodies. Only 24% of the standalone institutions are run by the government and the rest are private. – Courtesy
The Hindu Business Line | New Delhi, Feb 28 |
The average level of shortage of skilled talent in this sector has risen from 6 per cent in 2014 to 12 per cent in this year.
Shortage of skilled talent in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) sector persists in India despite the country producing maximum number of graduates globally, says a report. According to data from the leading job site Indeed, the average level of shortage of skilled talent in India has risen from 6 per cent in January, 2014 to 12 per cent in January this year in STEM sector. The leading sectors hiring STEM talent include information technology, banking and financial services. The top job roles these companies offer include software engineer, web developer, business analyst, software architect and SAP consultant.
Findings of the survey assume significance as India produced the maximum graduates worldwide with 78 million fresh graduates in 2016 alone, of which 2.6 million were from STEM. “This puts India in a position to outstrip the US in terms of STEM graduates produced annually, given that it leads by a margin of over 2.5 million,” the report said adding that despite ample talent, some job roles remain vacant due to lack of requisite skills. According to industry experts and academicians, one of the chief contributors to the talent mismatch is the disparity between college curricula and industry expectations. “Today, India produces a significant share of the world’s graduates, and this share will only continue to grow in size as we work towards building and strengthening our knowledge economy,” Indeed India MD Sashi Kumar said. Kumar further noted that the shift towards higher education will not only give a boost to STEM sector, but also help expand India’s contribution to the global talent pool. Indeed’s data also indicates that job seekers in the age group of 21–25 show 12 per cent more interest in STEM jobs than in any other sector. – Courtesy
ND TV | Education | Maitree Baral | February 24, 2018 |
B.Tech graduates or those in the final year of B. Tech or Integrated M.Tech or integrated M.Sc. in Science and Technology streams from IISc/ IITs/ NITs/ IISERs/ IIITs are eligible for the fellowship. Additionally, applicants must have also secured 8 CGPA or more for being eligible for the fellowship.
NEW DELHI: Online registration for Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship (PMRF) has begun. The last date to apply is 31 March. B.Tech graduates or those in the final year of B. Tech or Integrated M.Tech or integrated M.Sc. in Science and Technology streams from IISc/ IITs/ NITs/ IISERs/ IIITs are eligible for the fellowship. Additionally, applicants must have also secured 8 CGPA or more for being eligible for the fellowship. The fellowship will lead to direct admission in IISc or 23 IITs for full time PhD programme. Application submission portal will be available at pmrf site. On 7 February 2018, Union Cabinet approved of the PMRF scheme under which 1000 best students with the eligibility criteria mentioned above will get direct PhD admission with fellowship ranging from Rs. 70000 to 80000. In addition to this, a research grant of Rs.2.00 lakh will be provided to each of the Fellows for a period of 5 years to cover their foreign travel expenses for presenting research papers in international conferences and seminars.
Candidates with B.Design admitted through JEE/UCEED and 4-year BS or B.Sc students of IISc, IITs, or IISERs admitted through JEE, KVPY and SCB are also eligible. Applicants must send abstract on topics related to science and technology with focus on national priorities. The word limit of the abstract is 1000 words and must be sent in a PDF format. There will be written test and interview for the selection. The syllabus of the written test will be same as that of GATE/ JAM/ CEED and it will be held at the respective IIT or IISc whichever is the nodal institute. Interviews at nodal institutions will begin in the mid of May (exact date will be notified on the official website) and final list will be out by 1 June 2018. Click here to Apply Online – https://pmrf.in/
The Economic Times | TNN | Feb 21, 2018 |
NEW DELHI: A panel headed by a former CEC and comprising top international and Indian academicians will shortlist India’s best higher educational institutions which will then be primed to have a shot at international glory.The University Grants Commission announced on Tuesday the four-member empowered expert committee (EEC) which is being entrusted to conduct the appraisal of the applications for shortlisting the 20 institutions of eminence (IoE). N Gopalaswami, the former chief election commissioner of India, is the chairperson of the committee, which comprises Tarun Khanna, Jorge Paulo Lemman Professor, Harvard Business School; Pritam Singh, former director of IIM, Lucknow and MDI, Gurugram; and Renu Khator, chancellor, University of Houston System. The government is likely to announce the names of the selected institutions by April 2018. The committee was constituted by the UGC post the approval of central government as per the UGC (Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities) Regulation 2017 and UGC (Declaration of Government Educational Institutions as Institutions of Eminence) Guidelines 2017.
Hindustan Times | Neelam Pandey | New Delhi Feb 15, 2018 |
The HRD ministry can ask the UGC to act against institutions if they don’t provide mandatory data under the National Institution Ranking Framework.
The human resource development ministry may slash funding to higher educational institutions in the country if they don’t provide all the information sought under the National Institution Ranking Framework (NIRF). It was learnt that a number of educational institutions affiliated to the Delhi University, such as St Stephen’s and Lady Shri Ram (LSR), have not shared mandatory data required for the ranking exercise. “As the NIRF serves as a report card to the nation, the ministry can ask the University Grants Commission (UGC) to act against such institutions. Hence, no institution should try to duck the requirement,” a senior ministry official said, adding that a decision will be taken on the matter soon. The UGC releases funds to universities every year. St Stephen’s principal John Varghese and LSR principal Suman Sharma did not respond to phone calls and text messages seeking their comments on the matter. The NIRF will announce its all-India rankings this April. Apart from an overall list of top institutes, a separate one pertaining to colleges will also be published. St Stephen’s did not participate in the 2017 round, while LSR ranked sixth on the list.
The Hindu | NEW DELHI, February 13, 2018 |
They can start new courses, set syllabi and fix fees: UGC
Colleges that perform well will now be able to apply for autonomous status, which will permit them to start new courses and programmes, set syllabi and even “fix fees for courses at their own level”. The University Grants Commission has notified guidelines for this change. To be eligible for such autonomy, the colleges must have been given ‘A’ grade by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council, which means a Cumulative Grade Points Average of at least 3 on a scale of 4. The conferring of autonomous status will empower colleges to “review existing courses/programmes and, restructure, redesign and prescribe its own courses/programmes of study and syllabi; formulate new courses/programmes within the nomenclature specified by UGC; evolve methods of assessment of students performance, conduct of examinations and notification of results; and announce results, issue mark sheets, migration and other certificates.”
Reservation policies will apply to these colleges too. However, the degrees, including PhDs, shall be awarded by the university with the name of the college on the degree certificate. The colleges will continue to be affiliated to the university but will enjoy autonomy to take their own decisions. Autonomous status will initially be granted for 10 years, but can be extended for five years at a time.
Such colleges will also have the right to appoint their own faculty and principal as per existent UGC regulations. “Colleges (of any discipline) whether aided, partially aided and unaided/self-financing are eligible provided they are under Section 2(f) of the UGC Act. The college should have at least 10 years of existence,” the notification says. – Courtesy
UGC Circular – Published on 12-02-2018 – University Grants Commission (Conferment of Autonomous Status upon Colleges and Measures for Maintenance of Standards in Autonomous Colleges) Regulations, 2018 – 19 Pages, pdf
The Telegraph | Feb 13, 2018 | BA score counts above PhD |
New Delhi: The University Grants Commission has given more weightage to graduation scores than doctoral degrees in draft norms the higher education regulator has unveiled for hiring teachers in colleges and universities. A candidate with 80 per cent marks in graduation stands to get 21 weightage points while applying for an assistant professor’s post in a college. The weightage is one point more than what a candidate will get for having a PhD degree. Some academics called the norms “regressive” and “biased” against the poor after the commission uploaded the UGC (Minimum Qualifications for Appointment of Teachers) Regulations, 2018, on its website last week and sought feedback. They said candidates from rural or disadvantaged backgrounds don’t often perform well in their graduation and might be affected by the proposed selection formula. By laying down a uniform formula for all the 800-odd universities and 40,000 colleges in the country, the UGC has also waded into selection nitty-gritty that had always been left to the universities to decide.
The draft rules have made a PhD degree mandatory for the post of associate professor in all institutions. It has also made PhD qualification a must for appointment of assistant professors in university departments from July 2021 in addition to qualifying the National Eligibility Test (NET) or the State Level Eligibility Test (SLET). In colleges, assistant professors need to have a PhD if they want promotion to a higher pay scale with the same rank after July 2020. Under the existing policy, a PhD degree is a must only for those applying for a professor’s post. The draft policy seeks to lay down uniform norms on how selection panels can shortlist for interviews candidates who apply for an assistant professor’s post in colleges and universities (see chart). The selection panel will award scores based on academic records. But whether a candidate is finally hired or not will depend entirely on his or her performance in the interview. – Courtesy
Click here to View / Download the UGC Circular, Published on 09-02-2018 : UGC invites Feedback/Comments/Suggestions from the Stakeholders/ General public on Draft UGC Regulations for (Minimum Qualifications for Appointment of Teachers and Other Academic Staff in Universities & Colleges and measures for the Maintenance of Standards in Higher Education) 2018 – 84 Pages, pdf
The Financial Express | FE Online | February 12, 2018 |
The draft regulations, however, have been termed as “extremely retrograde” by Delhi University teachers for the appointment of teachers as well as their promotion. The teachers have objected, in particular, to the minimum 55 per cent marks requirement at Masters level for direct recruitment for general category candidates.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has drafted fresh regulations on minimum qualification requirement for appointment of teachers and other academic staff in universities and colleges. As per the draft regulations, the UGC has made PhD compulsory for candidates seeking appointment to the post of associate professor, the Indian Express has reported. Besides, it has also made a minimum requirement of 55 per cent marks at the Masters level for direct teaching recruitment. The draft regulations, however, have been termed as “extremely retrograde” by Delhi University teachers for the appointment of teachers as well as their promotion.
Here are minimum qualification requirements according to UGC 2018 has drafted regulations:
• For direct teaching recruitment, a minimum of 55 per cent marks at the Masters level is required.
• PhD is mandatory to be promoted as an associate professor.
• No study leave to pursue PhD.
• A candidate who scored 80% marks at the undergraduate level will get 20 points.
• Those with 60-80% marks will get 19 points.
• Those who scored less than 55% get no points.
• The draft regulations have however done away with the Academic Performance Indicator (API) score till the post of assistant professor.
The Telegraph | Feb 08, 2018 | Opinion ||
New Delhi: A University Grants Commission member who comes across as a BJP supporter in his social media posts has criticised the move to link higher pay for teachers with internal generation of resources, using the word “unthinkingly” to describe how some decisions are taken. The criticism came in a Facebook post by Prof. Inder Mohan Kapahy, who was appointed a member of the higher education regulator by the NDA government in February 2015. While issuing the 7th Pay Commission order, the human resource development ministry had said institutions would have to generate 30 per cent of the required additional cost for implementing the revised pay scale. “Routinely the departments of Finance Ministry sends such circulars to ‘autonomous institutions’ connected financially with the Union Government and the same unthinkingly, without application of mind, percolate down to UGC and then to the university systems,” Kapahy said in his post.
The 6th Pay Revision documents had spoken about an 80:20 formula. “Nothing happened,” Kapahy wrote. “Any such formula may have some relevance in the revenue generating autonomous PSUs (public sector undertakings) but no meaning for our universities and colleges. It can be easily ascertained that even those PSUs can’t and don’t follow the impractical formula.” “There is absolutely no way in which the HRD Ministry or the UGC can implement the 70:30 formula in university systems,” he added. It wasn’t clear whether he intended to take up the matter in the commission. Kapahy could not be contacted despite repeated attempts. In some of his other posts, however, Kapahy comes across as a BJP supporter. “There is no doubt this budget is geared towards the poor and the farmer,” he had written after last week’s budget. “The opposition naturally shall berate it as an election budget of unrealistic promises! In fact it is afraid that over 70% of Indians may actually appreciate it to its horror.” The issue of internal funds generation has led to protests by teacher associations across the country. The Delhi University Teachers Association (DUTA) observed a strike on Wednesday. The All India Federation of University and College Teachers Organisations will also support the DUTA in opposing the new funding formula. – Courtesy / https://www.facebook.com/public/Inder-Mohan-Kapahy
The Telegraph | Feb 07, 2018 ||
Sambalpur: An 81-year-old retired officer of the rural development department has taken admission in the Odisha Open University’s Bhubaneswar centre. The varsity’s vice-chancellor Srikant Mohapatra, while interacting with the learners, said: “There is no age limit for acquiring knowledge. The old man, Sarat Chandra Patnaik, a retired class I officer of the rural development department, has enrolled himself to study the rural development course.” Patnaik had secured his BA degree from Berhampur University in 1973. “See for yourself the interest of the old man. At this age, Patnaik wants to study and acquire more knowledge. He is sincere in his studies. He told me that as he was writing fast, the teachers were not able to read his handwriting,” the VC said, while narrating his experience of meeting Patnaik. He has successfully served 40 years in his department.
Mohapatra said he had gone through his answer papers. He added so many extra pages in his answer sheets, but due to age problem and fast writing, his hand writing was not clear for the teachers to evaluate. “I am proud of such a student. At this age, he is attending classes,” Mohapatra said. He said the Open University would start a master’s degree in cyber security from the next academic session. “We have applied to the UGC for allowing us to open the cyber security course in our university,” he said, adding: “I am not in favour of opening courses without the approval of the UGC. I do not want to provide unrecognised certificate to students.” He said the students enrolled in the Open University were taking keen interest in their studies. For the first time, the VC had organised the interaction session to get feedback from the learners in the presence of teachers. Most of the students took part in the interactive session, praised the courses and requested the VC to open more job-oriented courses. Teachers Lakshmi Meher, Subhas Panigrahi, Satyanarayan Bhoi, Pruthibiraj Mishra and course co-ordinator Mahendra Behera spoke on various aspects of teachings and its impact on students. Students requested the VC to include more practical classes and field study programmes. Pratap Kumar Das, a journalism student, said the course was so much interesting that his wife had also taken admission in it from this session. – Courtesy