How the uni­ver­si­ties were ranked

India Today - - LEAD ESSAY -

The in­dia to­day Best Uni­ver­si­ties sur­vey, con­ducted by the Nielsen Com­pany, ex­am­ined the coun­try’s uni­ver­si­ties in four streams—gen­eral (arts, sci­ence and com­merce), tech­ni­cal, med­i­cal and le­gal. Uni­ver­si­ties that of­fer post­grad­u­ate cour­ses in these streams were con­sid­ered. In­sti­tu­tions of na­tional im­por­tance spe­cial­is­ing in only one area of knowl­edge, such as en­gi­neer­ing, medicine and law, have also been in­cluded in the sur­vey. That’s why pre­mier in­sti­tutes such as IITs and AIIMS also find place in the list.

A list of 500 uni­ver­si­ties was gen­er­ated, based on sec­ondary data sources, such as the In­ter­net, pub­lished re­ports and the As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dian Uni­ver­si­ties Hand­book, and sug­ges­tions from ex­perts. Be­tween Fe­bru­ary and March this year, around 600 ex­perts across the coun­try were asked to rank these uni­ver­si­ties. The ex­perts—deans, regis­trars, depart­ment heads, pro­fes­sors and read­ers—were not al­lowed to rate their own univer­sity.

The ex­perts were asked to dis­trib­ute 100 points across 11 pa­ram­e­ters:

Rep­u­ta­tion of the univer­sity

Qual­ity of aca­demic in­put

Fac­ulty

Re­search pub­li­ca­tions/re­ports/ projects

Stu­dent care

In­fra­struc­ture

In­no­va­tion and gov­er­nance

Ad­mis­sion pro­ce­dure

Place­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties /en­rol­ment for higher ed­u­ca­tion

Global ex­po­sure

Se­cu­rity for stu­dents

The rat­ings of ex­perts de­ter­mined the per­cep­tual rank of a univer­sity. In the next stage, the uni­ver­si­ties were con­tacted for fac­tual data. Seventy uni­ver­si­ties re­sponded to the sur­vey with de­tailed in­for­ma­tion.

The fac­tual data was sought on these pa­ram­e­ters: ad­mis­sions and stu­dents’ per­for­mance, in­fra­struc­ture, place­ments, aca­demic in­put, re­search and pub­li­ca­tion, awards, in­dus­try in­ter­face and fac­ulty. All fac­tual in­for­ma­tion pro­vided by a univer­sity was rescaled and then ag­gre­gated to get an over­all fac­tual rank.

The uni­ver­si­ties that did not pro­vide fac­tual data were not con­sid­ered. The per­cep­tual rank and the fac­tual rank were com­bined to de­rive the fi­nal rank­ings. Both ranks were given 50 per cent weight. The over­all score was in­dexed to 100.

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