High Power Committee likely to submit report by month-end
The much talked about grading of engineering colleges may be a reality soon with the government seriously looking into the issue.
The High Power Committee constituted by the State government has been asked to discuss the grading issue and prepare guidelines. The report is likely to be submitted by the month-end. If the system comes into effect, it will be a major tool of assistance for parents and students to gauge the performance of the college on different parameters, and help them to choose the institution accordingly.
As of now, the only mode of analysing the quality of the institution available with the students is the accreditation by the National Board of Accreditation (NBA). Sometimes, the placements factor also helps parents.
“As privatisation has led to the increase of colleges they have to be more responsive to the expectations of those they serve. The grading will help the students besides forcing the institutes to improve the quality of education and also update the infrastructure as per the demands and needs,” a senior official of the JNTU Hyderabad said. “In fact, we are flooded with grading requests from parents during admissions.”
An effort to give grade engineering colleges was made earlier also but the government backed out at the last moment under pressure from private colleges that were obviously scared that their image would take a beating. The economic audit of colleges was also done. However, it did not see the light of the day apparently under pressure from private colleges.
Infrastructure, faculty, collaboration with foreign universities, library facilities, campus interviews, placements and value-added services are likely to be taken into account before awarding the grades. “With 700-odd engineering colleges trying to attract students there is no other way but to give some kind of rating to them,” an official said. The government apparently is also of the view that once the grading is done it will pave way for liberalisation of the fee structure as is being demanded by the college. The better graded colleges can seek a higher fee and justify their demand. Even the students who are willing to pay money for quality will have an option. “There will be lesser pressure on the government on enhancing the fee with the grading structure,” an official said.