COIMBATORE: The University Grants Commission’s has fixed stringent norms for an institution to be declared as ‘deemed to be university’. The new regulation was published in the central government gazette on Wednesday and it will replace the old norms of 2016. According to the new regulation, only institutions which are more than 20 years old, and have a NAAC CGPA score of at least 3.26 or have two-thirds of their technical programmes accredited by the National Board of Accreditation are eligible to become a Deemed to be University.
In addition, the institutions must also figure in the top-50 ranks in the ‘specific category’ or in top-100 ranks in the ‘overall category’ in the National Institute Ranking Framework’s (NIRF) list.
Institutions will also have to maintain a teacher-student ratio of 1:20. Their faculty strength must not be less than 100 and students’ strength (in regular mode) must not be less than 2,000.
The new regulation has tasked UGC with the responsibility of monitoring the performance of these Deemed Universities annually. The regulatory body will have to check the academic performance, placement record and higher educational opportunities for students passing out of these varsities.
Sponsoring body to apply online
The sponsoring body has to apply online to the UGC with a DPR containing its 15-year detailed strategic vision plan and a five year rolling implementation plan viz. academic, faculty recruitment, admission, research, networking, infrastructure development, finance, administrative, governance, with clear annual milestones and action plans on how the new institution Deemed to be University is to be set up, with identifiable outputs and outcomes.
Deemed to be Universities in category-I and category-II or ranked from 1-50 in the universities category of current NIRF ranking will be permitted to start new off-campus centres. The new regulation has also fixed the responsibility on UGC to annually monitor performance and academic outcome of all Deemed to be Universities.
Some of the parameters are- Minimum of 50 per cent of graduating students secure access to employment or self-employment or pursue higher education. Train students on team-work, communication skills, leadership skills, time-management skills, soft skills, etc; and inculcate a spirit of innovation/entrepreneurship and critical thinking among the students and promote avenues for display of these talents. Commenting on the new regulation, SASTRA Vice Chancellor S Vaidhyasubramaniam said, while the new regulations is progressive and also monitors quality through benchmarks, the UGC Act needs to be amended to allow Deemed Universities to use the word ‘university’.
While SASTRA VC said the new regulation is progressive, he wanted the UGC Act to be amended to let deemed varsities be called just ‘University’