Top faculty from IITs, NITs to hand-hold other engineering colleges
Faculty from the country’s best engineering colleges will work as mentors with hundreds of engineering colleges across the country that are laggards in terms of teaching techniques and curriculum, and which do not have enough and high-quality faculty.
The plan is part of a push by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to ensure that at least half the programmes offered by engineering colleges in the country are approved by the National Board of Accreditation (NBA) before 2022.
An analysis by AICTE revealed that hundreds of engineering colleges have been unable to get their courses approved by NBA due to outdated curriculum, low emphasis on learning outcomes, and inadequate and poor faculty.
Under the mentorship plan 200 faculty members from the best technical institutions will be appointed as ‘margdarshaks’ for institutions struggling to get accreditations, a senior HRD ministry official said on condition of anonymity.
“The mentors will choose five to 10 institutions which are within 500 km radius of the nodal institution. They will try to help institutions clear NBA accreditation for at least two-thirds of the courses offered by them. The aim is that each of these mentors ensure that the institutions mentored by them receive NBA accreditation by 2022,” the official added.
According to the plan chalked out by the ministry of human resource development and AICTE, mentors will be selected from the faculty of the top 50 institutions including the IITs and top NITs.
“Academic leaders of repute, including those have retired, who have the capacity to travel and train institutions and their faculty will also be chosen. The AICTE will then hold special training sessions for these mentors so that the focus on achieving the NBA accreditation process is clear,” said the official.
The AICTE will then write to the institutions about the appointment of mentors for helping them reach the required standards of accreditation, the official said.
It is estimated that as many as 2,000 engineering colleges could come under the purview of this initiative, a second government official added, asking not to be identified.
Commenting on the HRD ministry’s plan, University Grants Commission’s former member Inder Mohan Kapahy said, “The quality spectrum, as far as technical education is concerned, is very diverse. There are institutes which excel like the IITs and NITs. And there are institutions which have mushroomed across the country, which may be comparatively lagging. So benchmarking, like that of NBA, is much needed. However, not every institution may not be in a position to get its courses accredited without guidance.”