Call for trans-disciplinary approach in higher education

Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), the national higher education mission, is a way to provide funding to larger number of institutions. The funding will be based on performance indicators relevant to students, faculty, and research, H. Devaraj, Vice-Chairman of University Grants Commission (UGC), said here on Tuesday.

Speaking to presspersons on the sidelines of the inauguration of the ‘PPG Centre of Excellence’ at PPG Institute of Technology and PPG Business School, he pointed out that this was to benefit those institutions that were not Section 12B and 2f (UGC Act) compliant, and did not fall within the mandate for funding by the University Grants Commission (UGC). “Out of the Rs. 50,000 crore that was allotted for higher education, UGC would get Rs. 25,000 crore and RUSA would get the other half. RUSA would be spread over two plan periods – the XII and XIII and is seen as a new approach to bring into its fold many institutions for funding purposes,” the Vice-Chairman said.

Enumerating the other reforms in higher education , Mr. Devaraj said that 200 community colleges had been identified to promote skill based courses. To give an impetus to skill training, the UGC was introducing the Bachelor of Vocational Studies course in colleges.

“Initially it will be offered alongside Bachelor of Science and Arts courses. But, eventually, in 10 years or so, these degree courses will be phased out and replaced with the Bachelor of Vocational Studies courses in various disciplines,” he added.

Earlier, inaugurating the centre of excellence, Mr. Devaraj called for a trans-disciplinary approach in higher education rather than an inter-disciplinary one.

Aimed at extending value-addition to the technical knowledge that students were receiving in their respective degree programmes, the courses at the centre would be designed to equip students to make them industry-ready. The courses would be offered in slots of 20 hours to 40 hours in collaboration with “market leaders in industry”. They would be offered to students from the third semester. Students of PPG Institutions would undertake the courses free of cost, while they would be extended to students of other institutions at a nominal cost.

Funding to be based on performance indicators

relevant to students, faculty, and research