Saturday, March 27, 2010

Parents choose proper engineering college


As a Principal of an engineering college I met number of parents, especially while seeking admission for their ward, asking about which engineering college or engineering branch will be good. Here are some tips.

     Choosing a College: 
(a)Read the information given in the brochure provided by the Director technical Education (DTE) and also that provided by the college

(b)Go to the website(s) of the college and click on the “Compulsory Disclosure” and read the information carefully. If the college has not disclosed the proper information, report to DTE

(c) Ensure that the college/society does not run any unauthorised courses.

(d) Go through all 'Heads' displayed in the website

(e) It is necessary to visit the concerned college and the department where you intend to seek the admission. Look for the following information:

(i) College management and their track record

(ii) College principal and his reputation

(iii) Department head, his/her reputation, number of faculty and their qualification, teaching experience. As per the current AICTE norms, the engineering colleges are required to maintain 1:2:6 ratio among Professors:Associate Professors:Assistant Professors. Note how many faculty have Ph. D.

(iv) Department laboratories, equipment

(v) Research currently undergoing in the Department and the involvement of faculty members and students in therein. This is important, as the
        quality of teaching is almost proportional to the quality of research.

(vi) Research papers published by the faculty in the international journals. national events organised by the College for students and the professionals

(vii) University Results and consistency: Students in the university merit list (first ten) for last three years. 

(viii) College fees: should be proportional to the reputation

The following aspects speak good of an educational institution, however choosing an institution only on any one or two of these, ignoring the points given above, could be a pitfall: 

(a) The college building and surroundings are highly impressive (Take a look at the college laboratories, class rooms and toilets)
(b) The College name figures many times in the news channels
(c) The college organises mega events (organising a mega social, sports or competition event, with budget more than INR 5 million, takes nearly 4-5 months organisational work by the college faculty and staff, which is likely to cause negligence towards academics)

Engineering Branch: 

All engineering branches are good. The branch should be chosen without any gender bias. 
In order to secure good job, it necessary that your ward secures First Division, consistently. All reputed companies look for consistency in the academic performance.

Seek admission for your ward, once you are satisfied with these aspects.


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

India: Union cabinet clears foreign universities bill

The Union Cabinet: India on 15 march 2010 cleared the Foreign Educational Institutions (Regulation of Entry and Operation) Bill, 2010, for introduction in Parliament. It seeks to allow foreign education providers to set up campuses in the country and offer degrees.

Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal said: “This is a milestone which will enhance choices, increase competition and benchmark quality. A larger revolution than even in the telecom sector awaits us.”

The Foreign Universities Bill, 2010, has been pending for the last four years owing to opposition from various quarters, including the Left parties, over certain provisions. Last year, it was referred to a Committee of Secretaries, which brought modifications to certain provisions.

The Bill was approved by the Cabinet, presided over by Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, without any change. It prescribes an eight-month, time-bound format for granting approval to foreign educational institutions to set up campuses. They will go through different levels of registration process during this period. Finally, they will be registered with the University Grants Commission or any other regulatory body to be put in place that will scrutinise the proposals of the aspiring institution as per India's priorities and advise the government whether to allow it to operate in India.

Though 100 per cent foreign direct investment through the automatic route is permitted in the education sector since 2000, the legal structure does not allow granting of degrees by foreign educational institutions here.

Three other reform bills, slated to be taken up in the Cabinet, were deferred to the next meeting. These are the Prohibition of Unfair Practices in Technical, Medical Educational Institutions and Universities Bill, the Educational Tribunal Bill and the National Accreditation Authority Bill. A Group of Ministers has already cleared the Bills.

Higher educational institutions, including IITs and IIMs, today hailed the government's go ahead for a bill to allow entry of foreign education providers in India and sought to allay any threat posed by the institutions from abroad.

Four years ago, when India first flirted with the idea of opening its doors to foreign universities, optimists said Harvard, Yale and Oxford would line up to get in. Now it seems few big-tags are interested in investing in India, although, Imperial College, Duke College, Georgia Tech and Schulich School of Business (York University) — are among those who have so far met senior officials in the HRD ministry and spoken of setting up a full-fledged campus.

One thing is for sure, the foreign universities in India shall initiate a competition among educational institutions, give boost to the research activity in the universities. These universities will also be able to offer attractive pay package to the faculty to attract good candidates.

The establishment of foreign university campuses in India shall provide an option to the students going to foreign countries in large numbers to obtain higher degrees.

This Bill along with the three other related Bills (mentioned as above) will be an effective package after the approval of the Parliament.

As whole, it appears to be a good move. Three cheers to the HRD Minister !