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‘J&K Colleges to get ranking on performance, excellence; students can choose their best college’

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Ranking is to be carried out on basis of asset of transparent criterion, unique index: Pr Secy HED

SRINAGAR: In a first in J&K, performance of the colleges will be judged through a comprehensive ranking system to be launched by Higher Education Department (HED).

Regarding this innovative initiative, Principal Secretary HED and Information Department, Rohit Kansal says the ranking of all Higher Educational Institutions in J&K would be carried out on the basis of assets of transparent criterion and a unique index.

The Department has roped in IIT Jammu as a knowledge partner to design the unique index as well as a special portal to collect the information and rank the colleges.

The MoU would be signed between the Directorate of Colleges J&K and the IIT Jammu soon. The two autonomous colleges of J&K viz. GDC Baramulla and GCW Parade would assist the Directorates of Higher Education in the unique initiative.

A core team would be drawn from Govt College Parade, GDC Baramulla, and Director Colleges to help in the creation of indices and primary data would be provided by the department to the IIT team for the formulation of ranking indices.

The IIT team would be responsible for creating an index of colleges based on the department’s suggestions, creation of an online portal/ dashboard, and processing raw data to prepare the final college rankings.

Rankings would be a useful guide for students in making a decision about whether a college is doing well in a general academic area compared with its peer institutions. Earlier the perception data was the major factor for choosing colleges in J&K by the student community which was sometimes “misleading and amenable to manipulation”.

Now with the initiative, hard quantifiable data would provide a more reliable basis for building a ranking matric.

The reliance on quantifiable data presents a result- or output-oriented approach in defining top colleges. The ranking is helpful in evaluating institutions based on what they have achieved over the last year.

The performance of the college in a diverse range of activities including academics, sports activities, research, placement, innovation, diversity, quality would be used to develop an index which in turn would be used to rank the colleges. The IIT Jammu management is very much happy at the opportunity of carrying out such an exercise which would be among the first such initiatives in the country.

Notably, Higher Education Department has already declared 2022 as the year of Excellence and all the colleges have been given broad guidelines for achieving excellence under five broad segments: Achievements under Academic Excellence, Enhancing Skills and Employability, Research and Innovation, My College My Pride, Rewarding Efforts and Achievement.

A student facing difficulty in choosing between the two colleges usually researches the thorough breakdown of each parameter and sub-parameters to understand how the colleges stand on the individual aspects most relevant to the student. It’s cumbersome to trawl through hundreds of institutions for their individual scores in each parameter, especially during the heat and hurry of the admission season. Now with the initiative, the process would be easily reflective of all criteria. The proposed College Ranking System would encourage Higher Educational Institutions to strive for excellence and would also enable the department to spot and incentivize the leaders and handhold those who needed assistance.

To improve the standard of the colleges in J&K and take them to the level of competing with the best colleges across the country, the feedback system launched by the department is already operational and is providing the students an opportunity to provide feedback about the quality of learning experience. Similarly, the teachers have also been facilitated by the system to provide inputs on the infrastructure and other administrative aspects of their respective colleges.

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