Accreditation now easy for deemed-to-be universities
TIE BREAK Institutes can apply for NAAC accreditation even if they have other campuses which have not been approved by UGC or HRD ministry
Deemed-to-be universities can go for National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) accreditation even if their off- campuses have not been approved by the University Grants Commission (UGC) or the human resource development (HRD) ministry, UGC has decided.
The move is likely to benefit 122 deemed- to- be Indian universities, including Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies; I ndian School of Mines, Dhanbad; Banasthali University, Rajasthan; Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Uttar Pradesh; Lakshmibai National University of Physical Education, Gwalior; and Tata I nstitute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai.
This can be done i f t he deemed universities’ off-campuses are not assessed, UGC said in a recent decision. It examined the issue of NAAC accreditation for the main campuses of the deemed universities with offcampus centre( s) which did not have required approvals or permissions of the UGC or HRD ministry.
NAAC can be asked to delink the accreditation of the main campus of such universities from their off-campuses and carry out the accreditation process of the main campuses, a UGC source said.
As per earlier rules, deemed universities declared as such under Section 3 of the UGC Act were eligible for NAAC’s assessment and accreditation process regardless of the number of years of establishment. The institutes had to get assessed all of their approved constituent units and campuses within the country and off-shore campuses, if any. Those with units or campuses not approved by MHRD or UGC did not qualify for accrediation.
According to Prof DP Singh, director, NAAC, “Earlier, all centres of a deemed-to-be university had to be approved by the UGC or MHRD to be eligible for accreditation. But now, these varsities can apply to NAAC, barring their unapproved centres.”
UGC (Mandatory Assessment and Accreditation of Higher Educational I nstit uti ons) Regulations, 2012, notified on January 19, 2013, make it mandatory for every higher education institution to get accredited by an accreditation agency after passing out of two batches or six years.
“Unapproved campuses were holding up accreditation for deemed-to-be universities but now they can go ahead and apply for accreditation for campuses which are approved. This will even help in improving their quality,” says Prof Singh. The rule is currently applicable to deemed-to-be universities but it “may be, perhaps, extended to other varsities as well.”
In late 2014, the UGC had written to these institutions asking them to shut down their off-campus centres for allegedly “violating” the stipulated number of off-campus centres allowed under the Deemed University Regulations, 2010.
Earlier this year, the govern- ment allowed deemed universities to open off-campus centres after five years of existence, provided they had NAAC accreditation. While a private deemed university can open six such campuses, government institutions have no restriction on off-campus centres.
The UGC (Institutions Deemed- to- be Universities) Regulations 2016 state that each constituent unit included in the original proposal of application for a deemed-to-be university will have continuous accreditation for two cycles with the highest grade offered and also get valid highest grade for third cycle, either from NAAC or an accreditation agency. The draft National Education Policy aims to produce students/ graduates equipped with the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that are required to lead a productive life.
For a young person in today’s changing world, values could mean different things. Writing for HT Education’s Young Minds At Work initiative, students from all parts of the country tell you what these are:
I s ha Yadav o f Jawahar N avo d aya Vi dya l aya , Ghaziabad, values positivity. “If our deeds and thoughts are positive, the results would be amazing,” she says. Shambhavi Sharma of DPS Bhilai too says one needs to learn how to stay optimistic and that her tagline is “we should be thankful for what we have rather than being sorry for what we don’t have.”
Ujjwal Kalra of Veda Vyasa DAV Public School, Delhi, is a spiritualist. “I think there is need for it in our world. This is because of increasing terrorism, crimes, feeling of revenge etc. Already, the use of technology has increased, pollution has increased, oxygen has decreased so there is a need for meditation, yogasanas, spirituality and knowing your inner peace, power and that is the thing I follow.”
Rozal, Kalra’s schoolmate, says she works on being calm and listens to others. “By being calm you can handle your emotions and problems well.”
A n a n d i t a D w ive dy o f Hanuman Prasad Dhanuka Saraswati Balika Vidya Mandir in Vrindavan believes it’s easy to understand a person with values. “My values are very simple, they comprise of respecting my elders and being patient.”
Ambika Mishra of St Raphael’s Higher Secondary School, Indore, values lessons taught by her parents. “I cherish what they have taught me – stuff like how to milk a cow when we went to a village and how to fix a bicycle. it’s amazing,” she says. They wanted attention to be paid to students with special needs, demanded that gurukuls make a comeback and wondered why there was a difference between “big public schools and government schools.” Students attending an International Adolescent Summit on Life Skills, Values, Gender and School Wellbeing held at Summer Fields School in Kailash Colony, Delhi, took some time out for HT Education’s Young Minds At Work initiative, talking about what they would do if they were made education (HRD) minister for a day.
Arun of Jawahar Navodaya Vidalaya, Mothuka, Faridabad said the medium of instruction of most government schools was Hindi – which created a problem for students giving entrance exams for management or medical insitutes as a working knowlege of English was required to write the papers. Joining an English coaching class was expensive and most students could not afford it. Also, teachers in government schools were highly qualified but they did not teach properly. As a minister, Arun said he would see to it that the teachers’children were also taught in their schools so they (teachers) would be forced to pay attention to teaching.
Bhavya Shah of Gopi Birla Memorial School, Mumbai, said he would as education minister bring about changes in terms of structure and systems of imparting education. It was necessary to make Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligences theory work in India to ensure“a child’s individual talents were discovered and accordingly education was customised and provided to him or her.”
A student with special needs himself, Shah promised t o pinpoint the best qualities in people with different abilities and disabilities and “impart knowledge to all of them using technology. There were tools and aids available through technology to make learning simpler for those with learning disabilities,” he said. All education boards of India would be “consolidated and together we can provide unified consolidated and excellent quality of learning to our youth.”
Shreetama Sur, a 10th grader from Delhi Public School, (DPS) Bengaluru South, said she would see to it that teachers did not take social anxiety or appearance disorders as mere disorders as they “are as dangerous as physical disorders.”
Teachers should not make someone with social anxiety speak in class. “I was a person who could not speak in front of cameras, but with the right help from teachers and institutions I can speak. However, forcing a person would not work. As minister I would definitely take up mental health issues,” she said.
Kavya of Srijan School, Delhi, wanted schools to follow ancient India’s Gurukul system, something like Guru Drona’s ashram where students went out and learned to deal with the hardships of life. Sandesh Dholakia from DPS Bhilai and Rashi from DPS Bengaluru South wanted to remove the rote learning concept.
“Children have to think creatively. Once they are curious, they would want to learn more,” Dholakia added.