IIT-Madras tops government rankings

IISc, Bengaluru is second and IIT-Delhi third in NIRF released by HRD Ministry.

June 11, 2020 02:18 pm | Updated November 28, 2021 12:26 pm IST - New Delhi

A view of IIT-Madras

A view of IIT-Madras

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Madras is still the country’s best in the field of higher education, according to the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) released on Thursday. The Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, stands at the second place, followed by IIT-Delhi.

Under the universities category, the IISc topped the list, followed by Jawaharlal Nehru University and Banaras Hindu University. While Delhi University has dropped out of the top 10, all the best colleges are affiliated to it: Miranda House got the first rank in the colleges category, followed by Lady Shri Ram College for Women and Hindu College.

These rankings come days after the QS World University Rankings showed that India’s best — including IISc and most IITs — have slipped in the global lists. This is due to the high weightage given to the perception parameter in most international rankings, Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank said at the NIRF release. “The global agencies give us a lower ranking due to ‘perception’, which is a subjective parameter, and I do not agree with it,” he said.


The NIRF, which was launched by the HRD Ministry in 2016, gives higher weight to parameters such as teaching and learning, student and faculty strength, use of financial resources, research papers and patents and graduation outcomes. Keeping in mind the social responsibility aspect of education in a developing country, there is a unique provision to judge institutions on inclusivity and outreach measures, including gender, geographical, and socio-economic diversity and the welcoming of differently abled students.

“90% of the parameters in NIRF are completely objective and fact-based, while only 10% is based on the subjective parameter of perception by academic peers and employers,” Mr. Nishank said. Acknowledging that Indian institutions also struggle on the “internationalisation” parameter in global rankings, he expressed confidence that the NIRF ranking will reach a point where international institutions will want to be included in the Indian ranking system rather than vice versa.

Under the universities category in the NIRF 2020, IISc topped the list, followed by Jawaharlal Nehru University and Benares Hindu University. On the other hand, the best colleges are all part of Delhi University; Miranda House snagged the first rank, followed by Lady Shri Ram College for Women and Hindu College.


The three best engineering institutions are all IITs, with IIT Madras and IIT Delhi followed by IIT Bombay. The Indian Institutes of Management, at Ahmedabad, Bengaluru and Kolkata, took the top positions in the management category. National Law School of India University is the country's best institution for studying law, while IIT Khargpur is the best place to study architecture, according to the NIRF.

With regard to medical education, All India Institute of Medical Education stands in first place, followed by Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh and Christian Medical College, Vellore. The pharmacy category was topped by Jamia Hamdard University, while the newly introduced dental category had the Maulana Azad Institute of Dental Sciences in first place.

Overall, 3,771 institutions registered in the ranking framework this year, which is a 20% increase in comparison to last year. All parameters are normalised to keep them size- and age-independent so as to ensure that larger and older institutions do not get any undue advantage.

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