There was a time not many years ago when the ends and means of education did not present a problem of much complexity. Good teachers, willing students where the ingredients of education, and with rapport between them, one might look forward to an educated population of some merit.
Today this is not so. For knowledge has brought with it some understanding of the complexity involved in the ingredients of the educational process. The concreted pattern of education still involve a teacher certainly, who is still the heart of matter. But to make possible the growth and development of the teacher, to enable him or her to deal with the growth of knowledge, one has to think of a variety of other sources and materials of education. One has to think of a curriculum or general frame works with in which he works and with in which the subject – fields are defined in progressive step for progressive age group of students. One has to think of text book that cannot be equated with the teacher, but that can make better teachers of good teachers, and less bad teachers of bad teachers. One has to think of experimental instructional materials, teacher’s handbook and student’s work book to accompany textbooks, and inordrer to develop these, one has to plan for workshop in which the teacher shall be an active participant and carry out organized research in the total process of education. One has to think of how to enlarge the subject content of teaching at school level and not merely to make a fetish of methodology, though methods do matter.
Due to knowledge explosion, there is a spread of education not only in India, but all over the world. Due to this change social needs have changed accordingly. A teacher is expected to face the new changes by undergoing trough training for new trends in education. Such training needs are satisfied by NCERT – National Council of Educational Research and Training.
We are long past seeing education in national pigeonholes. As there are no barriers in health, art, idealism. So there can today be no barriers in knowledge or education. It is the business and the accepted obligation of NCERT to see the total dimension of the education, international or national, to study the advances made elsewhere, to adopt, where possible, and to adopt its own slender resources to these changes. In doing this NCERT must be aware of the distinctive features of India’s own policies and economy. Numbers are for India an obsessive problem. She is a poor country. She has to acute shortage of teachers and an even more acute shortage of trained teachers. Upon all these NCERT must base its attack.
The National Council of Educational Research and Training was established in New Delhi, on 1st September, 1961 for providing academic support in improving the quality of school education in India. It is the academic adviser to Ministry of Human Resources development (HRD) of the government of India. The ministry draws upon NCERT’s expertise while formulating and implementing policies and programs in the areas of school and teacher education. Funded by the government of India, this autonomous organization is registered under the Societies Registration Act (1860).
The General Body is the policy making body of the NCERT with the Union Minister for Human Resource Development as its President. All the ministers of education in the State and Union Territories are its members. Beside experts in the field of education are also nominated as members. Its membership patters helps in taking policy decision at the highest level.
The governing body of the NCERT is the executive committee, again with the Union Minister for Human Resource Development as its ex-officio President. The Union Minster for State is its ex-officio vice president assisting the Executive committee dealing with finance, establishment matters and programs.
Management of all the affairs and funds of the council vests in the Governing Body or Executive Committee which is composed of officers of the Faculties of council , representatives of Ministries of education and finance, and eminent educationists. Its programs are carefully considered by program Advisory committee on which are represented several Faculty members, representatives of state Institute of education and University Department of education. It has several advisory committees for dealing with specific problems in different fields like publications, science etc., with men of repute and standing drawn from all over the county.
ROLE OF NCERT
· To monitor the administration of NIE / Regional colleges of Education.
· To undertake aid, promote and co-ordinate research in all branches of education for improving school – education
· To organize pre-service and in-service education programmes for teachers.
· To prepare and publish study material for students and related teacher’s handbooks. /
· To search talented students for the award of scholarship in science, Technology and social sciences.
· To undertake functions assigned by the Ministry of education (Now HRD) for improving school –education.
· To promote, organize and foster research in all fields of education.
· To disseminate knowledge of improved educational techniques and practices; and
· To conduct special studies, surveys and investigations.
It is quite interesting to know how following constituent institutes works.
The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) with six constituents has been serving
NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF EDUCATION:
The NIE’s activities are mainly confined to (a) research and development (b) in service training and (c) publishing and dissemination programmes. Important among these programmes are developed and evaluation of curriculum, instructional materials, learning resources and instructional strategies. These programmes cover the entire range or preprimary to higher secondary stage of education and all school subjects including the vocational stream at the higher secondary stage. Its other programmes include examination reform and test development, nutrition and health education, education of scheduled caste and scheduled tribe students, girls, education, population education, value education and physical education. The NIE also develops prototypes of science kits which are in fact mini-laboratories for schools. Other important areas of its works are the non-formal education for out-school children, early childhood education, education of the disabled and programmes for the educationally backward minorities. The NIE has computer facilities for storage and retrieval of data. It periodically conducts educational surveys which throw light on the educational facilities and needs. The NIE has also a library and documentation unit specializing in education.
The special reference library for the use of researches I then filed of applied psychology called the National Library of Educational and Physiological Test’s is also located in the NIE.
Considering the importance of improving the quality of teacher education in India, the government had established the National Council for teacher Education (NCTE) and functioning as its academic secretarial is the Department of Teacher Education, Special Education and Extension Service (DTESEES). Tough the NIE primarily confines its activities to in-service training; it nevertheless conducts a regular nine month Diploma Course in Educational and Vocational Guidance. This is basically a pre-service course meant for training a band of counselors for the school system.
CENTRAL INSTITUTE OF EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY (CIET)
The CIET is the sixth constituent unit of the NCERT. It was set up in 1984s by merging the Centre for Educational Technology and Department of Teaching Aids. It aims at promoting the use of educational technology, particularly mass media, for improving and spreading education in the country, and for developing an alternate system of education.
The CIET develops (a) software in mind the educational needs, (b) trains personnel wording in the field of educational technology, (c) conducts and disseminates information concerning educational media and technology.
The CIET is headed by a Joint Director, appointed by the Government of India. It has helped in setting up six States institutes of educational Technology (SIETs), one each in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Orissa and Uttar Pradesh. The SIET and the CIET produce educational television programmes for children in the age group 5-8 and 9-11 years and teachers. These proigrammes are telecast for three hours and forty minutes a day by using the satellite and ground transmission network.
The CIET is equipped to take up programmes covering most of the areas of educational technology, viz, distance education, educational television, radio, films and low cost material. We shall discuss a bit detail about CIET separately because of its importance.
REGIONAL INSTITUTES OF EDUCATION (RIES)
The Council has four Regional Colleges of Education (RIEs) one each at Ajmer, Bhopal, Bhubaneswar and Mysore. These campus colleges with the Demonstration Multipurpose Schools attached to them. Such schools help the faculty to develop methodologies and test them in the actual classroom situation. Each college has modern laboratories, well-equipped library and residential quarters.
The college offered for integrated teacher education courses leading to B.Sc, Ed. Degree. Except RCE Ajmer the other college also offered a similar programme leading to B.A., B.Ed programmes.
The Bhubaneswar and Mysore RCEs also offered M.Sc Education programmes.
Facilities for doing doctoral work for the pursuing one year B.Ed and M.Ed courses were also available in the RCEs.
All the RCEs conduct in-service training programs both for school teachers and teacher educations. Besides teaching and extension work, the colleges also take up research and development programmes. Now they are converted in Regional Institutes of Education.
The States play a pivotal role in the area of school education in India. The NCERT works in close co-operation with the state education departments. It has a network of 17 filed Advisers (FAS) offices covering at state and union territories. The council associates the representatives of states with its programmes and with the comities constituted by it.
The NCERT has close ties with universities and other organizations that have a stake in the quality of school education. Prominent among them are the Kendriya Vidyalays Sangathan (KVS), the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), the Central Tibetan Schools Administration (CTSA), and the Navodaya Vidyalays Samiti (NVS).
The functions of the NCERT broadly relate to
(a) Research and development
(b) In –service and pre-service training
(c) Extension and dissemination work –all these lauded to achieve the main objective of improving the quality of education.
The NCERT, therefore (i) develop curriculum, instructional and exemplar materials, methods of teaching, techniques of evaluation, teaching aids, kits equipments, learning resources etc. (ii) Organize pre-service and in-service training of teachers, teacher educators and other educational personnel; (iii) conducts and promotes educational research; (iv) disseminates improved educational techniques and practices and research findings, and (v) acts as a cleaning house for ideas and information on all matters relating to school education and teacher education.
Realizing the importance of textbooks, the government, after independence, increasingly acquired more control over preparation, production and distribution of textbooks in addition to the concern for production of quality textbooks in large quantity, one of the significant argument for adoption of the policy of nationalization was the state produced textbooks would check anti-democratic and would help meeting the challenges of casteism, communalism, regionalism, linguism, religious intolerance, untouchability and some other national and global concerns.
The publishing programme of the NCERT is a part of its total effort to improve the quality of school education. The NCERT textbooks published in English, Hindi, and Urdu languages have the unique distinction of being once attractive and inexpensive. These textbooks are freely adopted by states under their nationalized textbooks programme. They are also used widely in schools affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education, Kendriya Vidyalays, Jawaharlal Navodaya Vidyalays, Tibetan Schools and several public Schools. The NCERT brings out a wide variety of publications such as (a) research literature, (b) School textbooks including workbooks and teachers’ guides, (c) General books for children of different age groups, and (d) educational journals viz., Indian Educational Review (quarterly), Journal of Indian Education and Bharatiya Adhunik Shiksha (bi-monthlies), School Science (quarterly). The Primary Teacher and Primary Shishak (both quarlies), and NCERT Newsletter and Shaikshik Darpan (both news magazines primarily meant for in –house circulation)
The NCERT also brings out supplementary readers under the Reading to Learn and National integration Series. These books are specially written keeping in view the needs of school children, to promote a healthy reading habit in them
The setting up of the NCERT in 1961 was a landmark in the history of school education in India. Since its inception, the NCERT undertook in a phased manner, a major programme of preparation of model curricula, syllabi and textbooks for the entire school stage. The NCERT faculty also collaborated with the State Education Departments and specialized agencies like, Textbook Bureau, Textbook Corporations etc., in formulation of their curricula and instructional materials.
Among other things, the NCERT acted as a academic secretariat of the National Board of School Textbooks (NBST) which was set up by Government of India in 1968 in order to co-ordinate and guide the activities of the national level and the State level organizations for production and several suggestions regarding preparation, evaluation, production and distribution of school textbooks and emphasized the societal concerns like national integration, secularism, and democratic living should find adequate reflection in the school textbooks. AT the instance of the Government of India, the NCERT, since 1969, has inter alia, been working on a programme of evaluation of the textbooks of the states and Union Territories from the standpoint of national integration. It has also remained associated, more or less, with the matters related to policy formulation and implementation in respect of school education. Keeping in view the emphasis on societal concerns like equality of sexes and population education, separates/Units have been created in the NCERT for ensuring their suitable reflection in the School curriculum.
The NCERT has progrmmes for encouraging talented school, children, innovative teachers, teacher educators and promising scholars wanting to pursue research studies.
Every year the NCERT awards 750 National Talent Search (NTS) scholarships-including 70 for students belonging to SC/ST communities. The purpose of this scholarship scheme is to identify talented students at the class X stage and give them financial assistance for pursuing higher studies. Students bagging these scholarships may pursue, or take up professional courses up to the second degree level in such areas as engineering or medicine.
In order to encourage experimentation and innovations, the NCERT organizes separate programmes for primary and secondary school teachers and elementary and secondary teacher educators. Called Seminar Readings Programmes these schemes envisage giving awards for significant innovative work by teachers and teacher educators.
The NCERT also awards research fellowships leading to Ph.D. degree of for doing post doctoral work, Only those scholars who clear the test administered by the University Grants Commission (UGC) are eligible for Ph.D. fellowships.
The NCERT sponsors and encourages out of school activities for popularizing science. The organization of science exhibitions at the district state and national levels is a part of his effort.
RESEARCH AND PROFESSIONAL GROWTH
The educational Research and innovations Committee (ERIC) of the NCERT funds research programmes taken up by scholars both within and outside the Council. The projects, however, are to have a direct bearing on either school education or teacher education. The ERIC also holds periodic conferences of educational research workers. Having funded publication of surveys of educational researches in India earlier it has now taken upon itself the task of compiling such research volumes as well.
The NCERT offers financial assistances to professional associations in the field of education for holding annual conferences and publishing journals.
The NCERTs international ranges from working with the united Nation’s institutions like UNESCO, UNISEF, UNDP, UNFPA etc., to assisting Third World Countries. It serves as the academic secretarial of the National Development Group (NDG) or the Asia and NCERT has been providing technical support to the states in the planning and implementation of various programmes to promote vocationalisation at the plus two stage. It has also been engaged in development of competency-based curricula for different vocational courses, development of guidelines for implementing different vocational courses, development of guidelines for implementing different aspects of vocationalisation of education, development of syllabi and instructional materials, training of vocational teacher educators, teachers and other personnel.
For orientation in favor of values, the common core components viz., (i) History of India’s freedom movement, (ii) Constitutional obligations, (iii) Contents essential to nurture national identity (iv) India’s common cultural heritage (v) egalitarianism, democracy and socialism, (vi) equality of sexes, (vii) removal of social barriers, (viii) observance of small family norms, and (ix) inculcation of scientific temper, emphasized in the National Policy on Education, are suitably reflected in the curricula and instructional materials of all subjects and at all stages of school education developed by NCERT.
With the view to meet the challenges in realm of teacher education, “Teachers Education Curriculum-A Framework” (1978) developed by the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) had been revised in 1990. This framework provided for transformation of the preservice teacher education structures and processes related to elementary and secondary teacher course. NCTE now granted a statutory status by the Government of India is in a position to persuade the states for acceptance of these recommendations. Programmes and activities related to the training of the personnel of the centrally-sponsored institutions DIETs, CTEs and IASEs are being implemented by the NCERT. A few examples of the self-instructional materials and multi-media packages are (i) the “In-service Teacher Education Packages” for primary school teachers and secondary school teachers, and (iii) the multi-media packages developed for operationalizing the operation blackboard scheme.
A major component of examination reform has been linked with the recommendation regarding introduction of semesterisation of the senior secondary stage. The NCERT has developed a framework for semesterisation in collaboration with Boards of Secondary and Senior Secondary Education. In this context, scheme of continuous and comprehensive evaluation has been evolved and circulated among the SCERT and Boards of Secondary Education. NCERT has also developed conceptual materials related to educational evaluation, preparation of criterion-referenced texts and the training of test item writers in different subjects’ areas. It has also developed a sample cumulative card along with procedures for maintaining records of pupils, achievement and guidelines for introduction of grading and grading and scaling in examinations. A project titled “Learning Attainment of Children in Language and Mathematics at Primary Stage” has been completed. A similar study on scholastic attainments at class X and XII level has also been completed.
A national talent search scheme is in operation for identification and nurturing of talent of class X. NCERT has also undertaken a programme to identify talented children in rural areas as per requirement of admission to Navodaya Vidyalays.
The NCERT works as the academic wing of the Ministry of Education and Social Welfare and assists the Ministry in the formulation and implementation of its policies and programmes in the field of school education. The functions of the Council are discharged on the following broad lines:
(a)To undertake studies, investigations and surveys relating to school education;
(b)To organize pre-service and in-service training mainly at an advanced level;
(c)To organize extension services;
(d)To disseminate improved educational techniques and good practices;
(e)To act as a clearing-house for ideas and information on all matters related to school education.
With a view to carrying out such functions effectively, the council works in close co-operation with the Education Department in the States and the Universities and generally with all organizations in the country for furthering the objectives of school education. Besides, the council maintains close relations with similar national and international agencies maintains close relations with similar national and international agencies throughout the world. In order to implements its programmes efficiently it has not only a large number of advisory bodies, but also it has an array of executive as well as academic institutions, departments and organizations throughout the country. It also maintains a liaison with all the state Government through the network of offices of Field Advisers.
Dr. Ram Shahal Pandey (2007), Education in Emerging Indian Society: Agarwal Publications, Agra 7.
Edutrack. Vol. III, Page No. 11, July 2004: Texbooks in Free India Policies, Practices and Problems.
Jagannath Mohanthy (1990), Educational Administration, Supervision and School Management, New Delhi: Deep or Deep Publications.
Luther E Bradfield (1964), Teaching in Modern Element: Charls E. Merlin Books.
H.C. Barnard (1952), an Introduction to Teaching, London: University of London Press Ltd.
ROLE OF NAAC IN PROMOTING QUALITY IN HIGHER EDUCATION
India is a developing country. Different types of religious people are living in the country. We have thousand years of tradition and culture. We are living in the technological and modern world Education is the primary need for all in the society. It is the duty of government to provide free education to all up to fourteen years. Universal higher education is our new aim. Now majority of professional educational institutions are in private sector. There are some benefits and losses due to privatization of professional education.
The Indian higher education system is in a constant state of change and flux due to increasing needs of expanding needs to higher education, impact of technology on the delivery of education, increasing private participation and the impact of globalization. Taking cognizance of these developments and the role of higher education in society, NAAC has developed.
GLOBAL CULTURE IN HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS OF INDIA
Nations are struggling to cope with the demands of quality education and a phenomenal increase in the number of students wanting to go in for higher education. Both the quality and quantity of education requires better academic and physical infrastructure a greater financial resources.
For the first time India is recognized internationally as a nation , which is providing value added trained human power at a premier level Indian experts are now persons who generate wealth and also are the backbone in many global science and technology revolutions. It is interesting to note that the employment opportunity pattern is also undergoing a change. The world will be looking for trained persons in all basic fields with a sound knowledge base in their core discipline and with the ability to adapt to new demands
The universalization of the job market and the acceptance of Indian skills at a global level have opened up opportunities for the creation of new jobs internally. Today India has one of the world’s largest stocks of technology & professionally trained manpower Professionals and technologists educated in India in various colleges /universities (not just IIT/IIM alone) are respected and in demand all over the world. Universities in developed nations are aggressive in attracting students from other countries. India should encourage the same policy. Attracting non-resident Indians and foreign students would bring invaluable income to the universities. Indian institutions should be given special provisions to enable foreign students to be admitted outside the present system of quotas.
India needs to become innovative in its higher education. Twinning programs with foreign universities will result on foreign exchange saving earnings for the university and country. Indian universities and institutions should be enabled to open campuses abroad, especially in neighboring friendly countries of Asia and Africa. Also we should focus on Teacher’s training; the teachers should be paid well. Here again more flexibility should be given to institutions to function with accountability, but at the same time they should maintain quality. India with a large and growing youth population can benefit socially and economically, if it can create opportunities for a lagged percentage-(30 %to 40%) of the youth to acquire relevant, good quality higher education with an inclusive and flexible approach.
ROLE OF HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE SOCIETY
Higher education is the backbone of all the societies. Quality of higher education decides the quality of human resources in the country. Higher education is the source in all walks of life and therefore supplies much needed human resources in management, planning, design, teaching, and research. Scientific and technological advancement and economic growth of a country depends on higher education system. Higher education also provides opportunities for lifelong learning, allowing people to upgrade their knowledge and skills from time to time based on social needs.
The Kothari commission (1966) listed the following roles of higher education institutions in the modern society.
1. To seek and cultivate new knowledge, to engage vigorously and fearlessly in the pursuit of truth, and to interpret old knowledge and benefits in the light of new needs and discoveries.
2. To provide right kind of leadership in all walks of life, to identify gifted youth and help them.
3. To provide the society with competent men and women trained in agriculture, arts, medicine, science, and technology and various other professions.
4. To promote quality and social justice, and to reduce social and cultural differences.
The report of UNESCO International commission on Education in the 21st Century titled “Learning: The Treasure Within” emphasized four pillars of education. Learning to know, Learning to Do, Learning to live together and learning to be. Higher education intends to include all these four in individuals and the society.
STRATEGIES FOR QUALITY IMPROVEMENT IN HIGHER EDUCATION
Quality in systems improvement is an unending journey. Quality doesn’t come by a chance. It is a continuous process. It comes through strategies of better human resources development. It comes when everyone works in a right way. To maintain quality in higher education three factors are equally important. These are
2. Instructional facilities
3. Human resources
Required facilities regarding them are following
· Adequate furniture
· Well equipped science laboratory & computer lab
· Outdoor & indoor games facilitates with physical education laboratory ,technology lab with instructional material &music room with musical instruments
· Fully ventilated and lighted classrooms
· Plantation and greenery inside & outside campus
· Separate administration wing & teaching wing and separate department for each subject
· Separate common room for boys and girls
· Language lab & work experience lab with all equipments
· Suitable transport for pupil and staff
· Library full of reference books, textbooks, magazines, national& international journals periodicals, up-to-date researches and reading room facility
· Internet facility & art gallery to develop aesthetic sense among students
· Proper notice board with relevant information
· Fair admission policy
· Time to time revised and reformulated syllabus
· Use of educational technology by teacher
· Innovative teaching method’s application
· Syllabus based on practicability of daily life situation
· Flexibility in stream choice
· Regular workshops, conferences, seminars etc. on emerging problem
· Continuous process of evaluation system
· Co-curricular activities as a part of syllabus
· Celebration of important days, events, festivals etc.
· Well qualified ,dynamic, sincere teaching staff
· Adequate number of teaching & non teaching members
· Regular organization of conducting educational researches and application of its conducting educational researches and application of its findings.
· Action researches for the betterment of the institution
· Workshops, seminars, debates, conferences, guest lecturers etc.
· project work for new discoveries and setup of new system
· incentives for hard work, sincerity, innovation, punctuality etc. for staff development
· awareness program as aids, polio, blood donation etc. in the institution
· time to time promotion of staff as per rule
· pension facility for staff after retirement
· sanction of leave for researches, higher education, for staff development
· alumni association for the improvement in the system of institution
· cooperation of local people for discipline and maintenance of the institution
· abolition of commercialization in the institution
NAAC’S PERSPECTIVES FOR QUALITY ASSURANCE IN HIGHER EDUCATION
THE NATIONAL ASSESSMENT AND ACCREDITATION COUNCIL (NAAC) is an autonomous body established by the University Grants Commission (UGC) of India to assess and accredit institutions of higher education in the country. It is an outcome of the recommendations of the National Policy on Education (1986) that laid special emphasis on upholding the quality of higher education in India that aim to ensure satisfactory levels of quality in the functioning of higher education institutions. To address the issue of deterioration in quality, the National Policy on Education (1986) and the Plan of Action (POA-1992) that spelt out the strategic plans for the policies, advocated the establishment of an independent national accreditation body. The NAAC was established in 1994 with its headquarters at Bangalore.
The NAAC functions through its General Council (GC) and Executive Committee (EC) where educational administrators, policy makers and senior academicians from a cross section of the system of higher education are represented. The Chairperson of the EC is an eminent academician in the area of relevance to the NAAC. The Director of the NAAC is its academic and administrative head, and is the member-secretary of both the GC and EC. The NAAC also has many advisory and consultative committees to guide its practices, in addition to the statutory bodies that steer its policies. The NAAC has a core staff and consultants to support its activities. It also receives assistance from a large number of external resource persons from across the country that is not full time staff of the NAAC.
To make quality, the defining element of higher education in India through a combination of self and external quality evaluation, promotion and sustenance initiatives.
· To arrange for periodic assessment and accreditation of institutions of higher education or units thereof, or specific academic programmes or projects;
· To stimulate the academic environment for promotion of quality of teaching-learning and research in higher education institutions;
· To encourage self-evaluation, accountability, autonomy and innovations in higher education;
· To undertake quality-related research studies, consultancy and training programmes, and
· To collaborate with other stakeholders of higher education for quality evaluation, promotion and sustenance.
To promote the following core values among the higher education institutions of the country.
· Contributing to National Development
· Fostering Global Competencies among Students
· Inculcating a Value System in Students
· Promoting the Use of Technology
· Quest for Excellence
For the assessment of a unit that is eligible to be assessed, the NAAC follows a three stage process
1. The preparation and submission of a self-study report by the unit of assessment.
2. The on-site visit of the peer team for validation of the self-study report and for recommending the Assessment outcome to the NAAC.
3. Grading, certification and accreditation based on the evaluation report by the peer team. The final decision is by the Executive Committee of the NAAC.
CRITERIA FOR ASSESSMENT
The NAAC has identified the following seven criteria to serve as the basis for its assessment procedures:
1. Curricular Aspects
2. Teaching-Learning and Evaluation
3. Research, Consultancy and Extension
4. Infrastructure and Learning Resources
5. Student Support and Progression
6. Organization and Management Healthy
Different criteria have been allotted differential weight ages. The weight ages given below are used for calculating the institutional score. The self-study report is expected to highlight the functioning of the institution with reference to these criteria
QUALITY PROMOTION AND SUSTENANCE ACTIVITIES
Quality assurance is a continuous process; the NAAC takes up many post accreditation activities to facilitate quality promotion and sustenance among all institutions of higher education, in general, and among the accredited institutions, in particular. Seminars and workshops on quality enhancement are being supported by the NAAC. To ensure that quality assurance becomes an integral part of the functioning of the institutions, the NAAC promotes the establishment of Internal Quality Assurance Cells (IQAC) in accredited institutions.
INTERNAL QUALITY ASSURANCE CELL (IQAC)
The IQAC is expected to become a part of an institution\’s system and work towards realizing the goals of quality enhancement and sustenance. The prime task of the IQAC is to develop a system for conscious, consistent and catalytic improvement in the performance of institutions. It has to be a facilitative and participative voluntary part of the institution. To help institutions establish the IQACs, guidelines have been developed by the NAAC. The IQAC is expected to make a significant and meaningful contribution in the reaccreditation of institutions.
The methodology for re-accreditation has been finalized incorporating post-accreditation reviews, feedback from the accredited institutions and the outcome of national consultations. Accordingly, the next two years will be the period of institutional preparations and implementation of re-assessment, for higher education institutions that volunteer for re-accreditation. The institutions that record their intent to volunteer for reaccreditation and begin institutional preparations will continue to use the outcome of the first accreditation
Till the end of the two-year institutional preparation period or till the re-accreditation outcome is declared.
THE METHODOLOGY FOR RE-ACCREDITATION
a) Process of assessment: The process of re-assessment and accreditation will be a combination of self-assessment that results in a report to be submitted by the institution, and peer validation of the report. Through Information and Communication Technology (lCT) enabled data management, a part of the quantitative data to be submitted to NAAC will be in the electronic format.
b)Minimuminstitutionalrequirements: The establishment of the IQACs and the use of ICT for data management, with institutional websites will be the minimum institutional requirements for reaccreditation.
c) Re-accreditation framework: The existing seven criteria will be followed for reaccreditation with revision and re-organization in key aspects. The framework for re- accreditation will be built on five cores
1. Relating to National Development
2. Fostering Global Competencies among
3. Students Inculcating the Value System
4. Promoting the use of Technology
5. Quest for Excellence
The specific focus of the framework will be the impact of first accreditation in three major areas namely quality sustenance efforts of the institution, quality enhancement activities and action taken on the first assessment report.
d) Outcome: The current nine-point scale will be followed.
e) Period of re-accreditation: The validity period of the re-accredited status will be for seven years from the date of approval of the status by the Executive Committee. There accredited institution has to record its intent for the next accreditation by the end of the fifth year and initiate institutional preparations during the sixth year; reports should be submitted to the NAAC by the end of the sixth year and the NAAC will conduct the assessment and declare the accreditation outcome before the end of the- seventh year. Institutions that do not follow these deadlines will lose the accreditation status.
f) The fee structure and other financial implications for re-accreditation will be the same as that being followed for first-time assessment and accreditation.
NAAC has also prescribed appeals mechanism after due consideration by the Academic Advisory Committee. An aggrieved institution can make a written representation to the Director, NAAC with payment of non-refundable fee of Rs. 20,000/- within one month from the date of notification of grade by the NAAC. The five-member committee constituted for the purpose will consider the appeal.
PROVISION FOR GRADE IMPROVEMENT
Institutions that would like to make an improvement in the institutional grade may volunteer for reassessment after completing at least one year of accredited status.
STUDENT PARTICIPATION IN QUALITY ENHANCEMENT
Students are the prime stakeholders in any system of higher education. Pedagogy, research and support systems are learner centered and learner building for the benefit of other stakeholders. Quality is the end product of responsiveness to their educational and professional needs and also to the need of personal development which has been the primary concerns the traditional systems of education in the country. These needs aren’t definable by a monolithic legislative body, be it the academic council, or such other arrangements with its impersonal codes and procedures.
Student aspirations and goals change in a fast changing world. That system in higher education, which is ready to honor them and shape its curricular and administrative performance, accordingly, is alone relevant. It can make student stakeholders partners in planning and governance rather than as a docile recipients of that which is imposed on them without sensitivity to their changing needs and aspirations.
The NAAC has emphasized the importance of making institutional assessment of quality depend substantially on student interests forming an essential part of the assessment the criteria of assessment for curricular planning and development insist on providing adequate course options, strategies for meeting different needs of mixed ability groups and on student feedback, student progression and the support systems which enable it. Student participation is engaged in all internal arrangements for quality assurance including IQAC.
A large number of institutions in this country have their own success stories to share concerning student participation in Quality assurance. Some have actively involved them in academic planning through representation of academic decision-making bodies. Others have made them effective partners with the institution in extension work; most personality development programs are student planned, funded and monitored. A few have involved them in the highest administrative bodies. While these are sporadic and need closer structuring and coordination, newer initiatives are necessary to make student active partners in responsible functional roles so that they can set their agenda within the policy of governance of this institution.
FUTURE OF ACCREDITATION SYSTEM FOR EDUCATION SECTOR
The primary purpose of the accreditation system for the education sector is to provide assurance to the beneficiaries about the quality of education. There are continuous improvements to the definition of quality of education. What constitutes a high quality education is a matter not left to be defined by the educationists alone but also various other stake holders of the society.
There is other secondary purpose to the accreditation system. These include the relative ranking of accredited institutions facilitating recognition of the accredited institutions by employers and immigration authorities; attracting better students & facilities, increasing the capacity to obtain projects &financial supports and so on. The need for accreditation systems assumes a high priority in the context of the proposed large scale expansion of the accreditation sector, including the possibility of entry of foreign institutions and programmers in India. However the nature of the criteria and process associated with different categories of institutions and programmers will not be same. The programmes offered through the distance mode offer very special challenges accreditation.
Criteria: The accreditation system for higher education sector in India is relatively new. Essentially there are two programmes. The national board of accreditation (NBA) meant for specific disciples of programs in Engineering/Technology/Management etc. coming under AICTE. And the accreditation by NAAC (National assessment &accreditation council) which covers all types of higher education institutions. There are some overlaps between the two. There is a high degree of national consensus that the exciting type of accreditation are not able to cope with the present and the growing demand.
We discussed about the role of NAAC in promoting quality assurance in higher education. Higher education is at the cross roads. At one end there is high demand for access to higher education, and at the other the quality is questioned. NAAC has taken a number of steps to promote the quality of Indian higher education. This also intends to prepare better trained individuals on quality in higher education. Quality assurance is not the destination, but a journey to continuously improve and exhibit excellence.