NAAC requires a massive overhaul in its ‘Quality Indicator Framework’. In its current form, it is replete with a number of irrelevant, inapplicable and avoidable metrics which at least 95% of colleges in India can’t demonstrate even 5% of the desired response. Institutes can’t even opt out from some of these. On the other hand, there are quite a few metrics which lend almost every institute to score 100% marks. Why have such metrics at the very first place? A good portion of assessment is susceptible to faking by institutes and the DVV process can be easily hoodwinked. A good number of quantitative metrics require physical verification but the peer visiting team doesn’t have the mandate to go beyond the qualitative metrics. In addition, Students’ Survey is also susceptible to getting fixed .
Not Just that, institutes are also sufficiently confused whether NAAC is mandatory or not. If it was mandatory, why won’t NAAC upload this critical information on its official website or mention the same in the NAAC Manual?. Gazette Notification by the UGC in the year 2013 however, makes it mandatory for the institutes who must get accredited within 6 months of becoming eligible. UGC impresses upon universities to go for NAAC but fails to document its mandatory/optional requirement. UGC has left universities further confused whether NBA accreditation applies to the programs of their constituent college. Whereas NBA by its Gazette in the year 2014 makes NBA accreditation mandatory for universities and colleges, the UGC only talks about NAAC for the universities.
It is therefore essential for the UGC and NAAC to clear the air so as not to leave universities hamstrung.
-The writer Prof JR Sharma is the Managing Director of STEMBOGEL and leads its ‘Accreditation Edge’ enterprise on global-best-practices in accreditations as its Principal Consultant.