Faced with a crippling shortage of teachers, there is a move to have the faculty of the existing Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) teach students of the new ones through video-conferencing and online tools.
Seven new IIMs are coming up—Ranchi, Raipur, Tiruch-irappli and Rohtak, starting with short-duration courses, this year, and in Rajasthan, J&K and Uttrakhand later. Each will start with 140 students, and go up to 560 eventually.
But where are the teachers? In fact, all the existing IIMs are themselves short by 100 teachers -- one of five sanctioned faculty positions is vacant at each of the seven centres.
“The new IIMs will begin with virtual classrooms to enable them to fight the shortage in initial years,” said an official at the human resource development ministry, refusing to be identified as he was not authorised to speak to the media.
As with borrowed faculty, most of these new institutes don’t have even their own buildings, and will be working out of borrowed space. It will be a few years before they settle down at their own place, with their own teachers.
For now, their teaching arrangements will be taken care of by the faculty of the existing IIMs. The plan is to appoint a mentor institute for each of the baby IIMs —for the purpose of teaching.
Using technology to get around the staff shortage was a suggestion from the IIM review committee headed by Maruti Udyog Limited chairman R C Bhargava.