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Role of Universities in Education Policy

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Wood's d's Despatch Woo a scheme to establish universities was to be formulated, whose functions were to hold examinations and corder degrees. The despatch also recommended that a number of high schools should-be set up4. This eventually led to the establishment in the country of the rst three universities in !"#$  The %unter &ommission report &ommission, inter alia, recommended the gradual withdrawal of the tate from the direct support and management of institutions of higher education. With regard to vocational and technical education, the &ommission recommended that in the particular class of high schools there should be two avenues, avenu es, one leading to the entrance examination of the (niversity and the other of a more practical character intended to t the youth for commercial, vocational and non-literary pursuits. )ole of universities in a nation

&entral function, responsibility responsibility or goal of university is to educate people people to wor* e+ectively in an increasingly technological world  that is, to provide the technical s*ills needed for a growing number of obs and professions that reuire sophisticated *nowledge and an education that instills the ability to thin* critically critically.. (niversities have a signicant role role in giving a nation nation its economic vitality, scientic scientic prowess, a broad outline of social change and global competitiveness, through innovation and research. research. /n /ndia the problem problem is more of employability, employability, than of unemployment. The s*ills that people have are not appropriate for securing employment. (niversities are centers of learning and have always been places where the s*ills and *nowledge of students are chiseled to suit the reuirements of the wor* places. 0eed of the hour is that our universities assess well in advance and structure courses in a manner that will help their students enter the employment mar*et, prepared prepared for obs available.

 This function has become more more complex and variegated, variegated, ranging from from general education for undergraduates to advanced doctoral instruction and supervision in the most speciali1ed elds. )esearch )esear ch is the other core function of universities, institutions for national development.


universities have provided vocational education and training for the top professions, thus developing a direct long-term lin* to the economy and to the practical needs of  society. (niversities almost everywhere have become *ey creative institutions. 2any professors, in addition to their teaching and research, involve themselves in the intellectual life of society as commentators, experts or analysts. ome are public intellectuals.  The tremendous creativity creativity of the 3nlightenment and the technological innovations of the /ndustrial )evolution largely too* place outside of the universities. The idea that universities were truly ivory towers5 designed to be separate from society, unwilling to open their doors to the emerging middle classes, meant that universities were largely uninvolved in the dynamic scientic and political developments of the era. (niversities received little public nancial support because they were not perceived as contributing signicantly to society. 0apoleon, for example, was so unimpressed with the 6rench 6rench universities of the ancien r7gime that he abolished all of them  and replaced them with the vocationally oriented grandes 7coles.  Towards the end of the  Towards !8th century, 9merican land grants expanded the research university concept to include the role of direct service to society and the *ey function of engagement with agriculture and industry. These developments, pioneered in :ermany and the (9, ( 9, spread elsewhere and brought universities bac* to the centre of society. ince the early ;<th century, universities or university-related laboratorlaboratories have been involved in *ey scientic and intellectual developments in most countries. The development of  radar, atomic energy and many pharmaceuticals illustrates this point.

 basic educational issues are political and can be decided only through political instruments; the ultimate responsibility for the creation of the national education system falls on the political system; and if the political parties do not accept it, no one else can and will. Here, a two-fold action is called for. The first is the positive action of the political parties evolving their own  policies in education and implementing them through Government. This needs a continuous dialogue between politicians and educationists and the development of educational 'think-tanks' and cadres in each party. n n the negative side, politicians po liticians should reali!e the great damage they are doing to the education system through their interference in establishment and control of educational institutions, appointments and transfer of teachers and other personnel, grant-in-aid, g rant-in-aid,


and in all other possible form merely to serve their appetite for patronage and to strengthen their  political base. The chaotic conditions in some of our universities are are a sad proof of what this interference has led to. The present relationship in education between b etween academics and politicians is very unsatisfactory. The academic desires for full political support without any political interference; and what the politician gives is full political interference without any political support worth the name. "hat we must evolve is a new tradition of full political support and legitimate political control which does not interfere with the genuine academic freedom of educational institutions and teachers. This is a long way to go g o in which both educationists and academics will have to modify their present positions considerably and learn to work together.

In Higher Education, NKC has focused on the three crucial aspects of expansion, excellence and inclusion. There are about 350 odd uniersities and !",000 colleges proiding higher education in the countr#, countr#, to about !0$ of the releant age group. This is extre%el# inade&uate in a countr# 'here the de%ographic diidend b# 'a# of a #oung population of about 550 %illion #outh, is a %uch tal(ed about asset. If 'e are to achiee a )ross Enrol%ent *atio +)E* of !5$ and aboe b# -0!5, 'e need to substantiall# increase the nu%ber of higher education institutions +HEIs in our countr#. countr#. hile this expansion 'ill hae to be achieed in part through increased public spending on higher education, it 'ill also re&uire diersif#ing the sources of / nancing to encourage priate participation, philanthropic contributions and industr# lin(ages. To this end, the current barriers to entr# in setting up HEIs are er# high rel#ing pri%aril# on legislation. NKCs reco%%endation to set up an Independent *egulator#  1uthorit# for Higher Education +I*1HE, at an ar%s length fro% all sta(eholders, that 'ould accord degree granting po'er to uniersities, is one 'a# to supple%ent the process of setting up uniersities through legislation. The regulator 'ould also be responsible for %onitoring standards and settling disputes. This 'ill strea%line


regulation of higher education in the countr# 'hich at present is %ar(ed b# a %ultiplicit# of regulators, often 'ith oerlapping %andates. 1 plethora of regulations 'ithout ade&uate autono%# or accountabilit# for institutions has resulted in a s#ste% that is oer o er regulated and under goerned. To ensure &ualit# NKC has called for refor% of existing uniersities including fre&uent curricula reisions, introduction of course credit s#ste%, enhancing reliance on internal assess%ent, encouraging research, and refor%ing goernance of institutions. 2urther, 2urther, there is an urgent need to restructure the s#ste% of ailiated undergraduate colleges 'hich no longer proides a iable %odel for &ualit# higher education. Creating %ore depart%ent based unitar# uniersities and giing greater autono%# to existing institutions should be explored. Instead of a single accreditation agenc# created 'ith state %onopol#, %onopol#, %ultiple accreditation agencies %a#be licensed b# the I*1HE to do the ratings. 4ac(ed b# stringent infor%ation disclosure nor%s, this 'ould e%po'er students 'ith reliable infor%ation and 'ould be a %echanis% for ensuring accountabilit#.. ualit# %a# also be enhanced through accountabilit# upgradation of infrastructure, attracting and retaining talented facult# through introducing salar# dierentials, greater research opportunities, facult# exchange progra%%es etc NKC beliees that all desering students should hae access to higher education, irrespectie of their socio6


econo%ic bac(ground. hile the goern%ent heail# subsidi7es uniersit# education b# (eeping fees f ees lo', lo', there is better alue created for this subsidi7ation b# ensuring 'ell funded scholarships and air%atie action that ta(es into account the %ulti di%ensionalit# of depriation 8iersif#ing career opportunities in 9cience: increasing attractieness of existing careers and generating ne' opportunities through collaborations bet'een bet'ee n industr#, industr#, uniersities and research institutes. ;roide <exibilit# to uniersities to raise fees acco%panied b# scholarships, fello'ships and student loans Create %ore uniersities expanding to around !500 uniersities nation'ide, to enable India to attain a gross enrol%ent ratio of at least !5$ b# -0!5 efor% existing uniersities to ensure curricula reisions, introduce course credit s#ste%, enhance reliance on internal assess%ent, encourage research, refor% goernance etc. *estructure the s#ste% of ailiated undergraduate colleges 

&urriculum Development Curriculu% should be %ade conte%porar# conte%porar#,, integrated 'ith other disciplines ensuring regular feedbac( fro% sta(eholders. 1utono%# %a# be granted to uniersities, National =a' 9chools +N=9>s and other la' schools


to decide the core and optional courses to be oered. This is a departure fro% current practice 'here the 4CI largel# deter%ines curricula and s#llabi. 1 co%%ittee should be for%ed that includes facult# and practitioners and see(s student feedbac( to discuss curricula, s#llabi and reading %aterial of all core and optional courses, and deise a ?%odel s#llabus for all core and optional courses. =a' schools and uniersities 'ould be free to use and depart fro% the ?%odel s#llabus. =a' teaching %ust be inter'oen 'ith related conte%porar# issues, including international and co%paratie la' perspecties. The curricula and s#llabi %ust be based in a %ultidisciplinar# bod# of social science and scienti/c (no'ledge. Curriculu% deelop%ent should include expanding the do%ain of optional courses, proiding deeper understanding of professional ethics, %oderni7ing clinic courses, %ainstrea%ing legal aid progra%%es and deeloping innoatie pedagogic %ethods . =egal education %ust also be sociall# engaged and sensiti7e students on issues of social @ustice

3xamination ystem The preailing exa%ination s#ste%s %a# be reised and ealuation %ethods be deeloped that test critical reasoning b# encouraging essential anal#tical, 'riting and co%%unication s(ills. The end6se%ester exa%ination should be proble%6oriented, co%bining theoretical and proble% oriented approaches rather than %erel# test %e%or# %e%or#.. ;[email protected] papers, [email protected] and [email protected] ia, along 'ith an end6se%ester exa%ination


to be considered as pedagogic %ethods i%peratie for i%proing &ualit#

Developing a )esearch Tradition in =aw chools and (niversities Creating a tradition of research in la' schools and uniersities is i%peratie if India has to transfor% itself fro% being onl# a consu%er of aailable legal (no'ledge to being a leading producer in the 'orld of ne' legal (no'ledge and ideas. The follo'ing %easures are re&uired to deelop such a serious culture of research: e%phasi7ing anal#tical 'riting s(ills and research %ethodolog# as integral aspects of the ==.4 progra%%eA creating excellent infrastructure +including research friendl# librar# facilities, aailabilit# of co%puters and InternetA digiti7ation of case la'A access to latest @ournals and legal databases

8ispatch of !"5B Indian education is %ar(ed b# 9ir Charles oods epoch6%a(ing 8ispatch of !"5B, 'hich led to +! the creation of a separate depart%ent for the ad%inistration of education in each proince, +- the founding of  the uniersities of Calcutta, 4o%ba#, 4o%ba#, and Dadras in !"5, and +3 the introduction of  a s#ste% of grants6in6aid. Een 'hen the ad%inistration of India passed fro% the East India Co%pan# into the hands of the 4ritish cro'n in !"5", 4ritains secretar# of 


state for India con/r%ed the educational e ducational polic# of oods 8ispatch  

The newly established universities did not initially underta*e any teaching

responsibilities but were merely examining bodies. Their expenses were conned to administration and could be met from the fees paid by the candidates for their degrees and certicates. The then existing ;$ colleges were a>liated to these three th ree universities. =ater on more universities were established. 9t the time of independence in !84$, there were !8 universities and several hundred a>liated colleges ?&[email protected], ;<<#A.  There has been an appreciable appreciable growth growth in the number of universities and and colleges in /ndia since independence from ;# and $<< in !84$ to B#4 and !$C;# in ;<<#. The total enrolment increased from a meager <.! million in !84$ to !<.4" million in ;<<# resulting in twelve fold increase in number of university

 There are signicant signicant di+erences in their their mandate, powers and functions. functions. The councils have rules and regulations of their own. There is large overlap of their functions with the functions of the (:&, other professional councils and even function of universities in some cases. /n ve cases, namely - 2edical &ouncil of  /ndia, harmacy &ouncil of /ndia, 9ll /ndia &ouncil for Technical 3ducation, /ndian 0ursing &ouncil and the @ar &ouncil of /ndia, there are also tate &ouncilsE and there are overlaps in functions of the national councils and state councils.

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