Category Archives: India
September 18, 2012, 11:30 am
In what will be a major overhaul, India’s top university, the University of Delhi, is gearing up to move from a three-year undergraduate degree to a four-year one starting the next academic session, in July 2013, reports the Mail Today. “It will offer students more time and opportunities to work on projects, innovation, and research,” said Dinesh Singh, the university’s vice chancellor. “The students will have time to think about what they want to study.” The university’s instructors will soon begin devising a new curriculum for the freshman year in all courses, though the institution’s academic council, which has resisted other reforms recently, has to first approve the changes. Some faculty members said they were apprehensive about rushing through the revisions, which they fear might harm the quality of education. India’s University Grants Commission, the country’s higher-education…
September 10, 2012, 2:57 pm
The number of Indians going abroad for higher education increased 256 percent from 2000 to 2009, according to a study by one of India’s top business schools, reports The Economic Times, a newspaper. Another study, by a noted Indian industrial body, said last week that the more than 600,000 Indian students now enrolled in foreign universities cost India $17-billion a year in lost revenue, reported The Times of India. The latter study, by the Associated Chamber of Commerce and Industry of India, found good-quality foreign universities should be encouraged to come to India to keep foreign-exchange funds in the country and because the “opening of the higher education [sector] will result in providing 30-40 million additional jobs in the field of education alone.”
September 10, 2012, 12:06 pm
The much-vaunted South Asian University, the region’s first cross-border university, based in Delhi, is off to a slow start, drawing just 27 students from Bangladesh, 17 from Afghanistan, and equally small numbers from other countries in the region, the Indian Express newspaper reports. Of the nearly 400 seats set aside for Indian students, only 81 have been filled for the eight graduate programs the university offers. An Indian parliamentary committee says that the university was set up in a hurry and that its courses and curriculum can hardly inspire a “sense of South Asian consciousness.” The university’s vice president, Rajiv K. Saxena, rejected such criticism and noted that as many as 2,500 students have applied for the coming academic session.
September 4, 2012, 10:53 am
The number of Indian women enrolled in higher education has risen almost 50 percent in four years, according to India’s university regulator, reports The Times of India. In the 2010-11 academic year, almost seven million women enrolled in college, compared with 4.7 million in 2006-7. In all, women represented 41.5 percent of total enrollments in 2010-11. Many of them—41.2 percent—are in humanities programs, which some education experts say is a sign that women still face barriers to studying subjects like engineering or medicine.
August 22, 2012, 11:22 am
The percentage of 18-to-24-year-olds in India enrolling in university has shot up 63 percent in the last four years, according to a survey conducted by India’s education ministry, reports The Times of India. The findings, which were announced by Kapil Sibal, the education minister, show that India’s gross enrollment ratio has risen to 20.2 percent from 12.4 percent in 2008. Mr. Sibal said that while the results have yet to be fully validated, the initial figures are encouraging.
However, he added that expanding university enrollment creates big challenges because India needs many more universities to accommodate its growing young population; by 2030 the number of college-age Indians is expected be 400 million. To help facilitate this influx of students, the minster said that the government plans to use low-cost tablets and the Internet to make higher education more accessible.
August 14, 2012, 12:31 pm
After signs that several long-delayed proposals to overhaul higher education in India would become law, they face new obstacles. A bill that would make accreditation of universities mandatory has been shelved because of renewed political opposition, reports The Times of India. A similar fate is expected for legislation that would strengthen oversight of university admissions and other activities, in an effort to curb unfair practices.
What’s more, the education ministry has decided not to push a much-watched bill that would allow foreign institutions to set up operations in India, The Economic Times reports. A separate bill, which would allow the central government to establish universities focused on innovation and research, is on the current parliamentary agenda, reports The Wall Street Journal.
July 10, 2012, 2:03 pm
India’s education ministry and its university regulator want to start as many as 100 community colleges in the next year or so to help deal with the country’s extreme skills shortage, reports The Indian Express. The effort has received American assistance. “We’ve been supportive and encouraging of the Indian interest in implementing a community-college system that’s right for India,” said Stephanie Forman Morimura, the cultural attaché for education and exchanges at the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi. A team of education ministers from seven Indian states recently visited the United States to understand its community colleges and submitted a report in May. As part of the first step in the process, Indian states have been asked to submit proposals to the ministry.
June 4, 2012, 12:05 pm
Shocked and embarrassed by the number of suicides by students of India’s so-called lowest castes, who face frequent discrimination on campus, the government has for the first time clearly defined and made punishable harassment and victimization of these students, reports India Today. Such discrimination has led to dozens of suicides in recent years. Biased evaluations of exams, attributing poor academic performance to social and caste background, and preventing students from fully participating in academic life, among other things, will now be punishable by the University Grants Commission. The new regulation also requires universities to appoint antidiscrimination officers to deal with complaints.
June 4, 2012, 12:01 pm
The Indian government, unsure that a long-stalled foreign-universities bill will be passed by Parliament, on Saturday approved new regulations under which the world’s top-ranked higher-education institutions would be allowed to run dual degrees or twinning programs with Indian universities, report The Hindu, The Indian Express, and the Hindustan Times. Already, India’s major left party has termed this move as “contempt of Parliament,” reports the Business Standard. The foreign universities must figure in the top 500 institutions, as measured by Times Higher Education’s World University Rankings or the Academic Rankings of World Universities produced by China’s Shanghai Jiao Tong University. More than 340 institutes in India now offer degree programs in collaboration with foreign providers, but few of those rank among the top 500. The new guidelines will cover these existing…
May 11, 2012, 10:03 am
After a long delay, India’s cabinet has approved two key higher-education reform bills, clearing the way for Parliament to vote on them, reports The Times of India. One would require mandatory accreditation of higher-education institutions, while the other would establish innovation universities to promote research excellence. The latter proposal had attracted interest from American universities to help set up the new institutions. The cabinet’s efforts are a sign that a set of long-delayed higher-education bills, including one that would allow foreign universities to establish campuses in India, may finally become law.