MU to enter the 4th academic year without NAAC grade
The University of Mumbai (MU) is likely to enter its fourth academic year without accreditation from the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). The varsity applied for the accreditation in December last year. Even as the university’s Institutional Information for Quality Assessment (IIQA) has been approved by the apex grading body, the new grade is unlikely to come through before the new academic session.
The IIQA submitted by the university was approved by NAAC a couple of weeks ago, said university pro-vice-chancellor Ravindra Kulkarni. “We are now in the process of submitting the self-study report (SSR). It should be done in a week or so,” said Kulkarni.
While IIQA is a document recording the university’s compliance with the criteria and policies of the NAAC committee, SSR is a form of self-evaluation to identify its strengths and rectify deficiencies.
Once the SSR is submitted, a peer team from NAAC committee will visit the university to verify the details submitted in the application. Thereafter, the NAAC committee is expected to take around six months before announcing the new grade. This means, the academic year 2020-21, too, will start without a NAAC grade in place.
NAAC accreditation is a performance indicator for higher educational institutes and is mandatory for applying for funds from Central agencies. The university had been granted a ‘Grade A’ score by NAAC in 2012. However, the score expired on April 20, 2017 after the university failed to apply for re-accreditation in time. It has been 34 months since then, but the university is yet to get a NAAC grade.
In the absence of a NAAC grade, the university has not only lost out on grants from the Centre but also slipped in national and global rankings.
“It’s about time the university got a NAAC grade. Four batches have suffered the consequences of not having an accreditation. It is a good thing that at least the university has started the process of getting a NAAC accreditation. However, the actual grade may come a few months down the line,” said Vaibhav Narwade, a senate member of the university.