JRFs to be counted in the NAAC must have passed either UGC NET-JRF and in recipient of the UGC award of fellowship. JRF is for the 2 years
* as per New version of NAAC, be a PhD research scholar of your university, provided scholar given a fellowship grant of the UGC equivalent say for example, @ INR 33 K per month. It must not include faculty and students.
Now, with the revised NAAC, since this metric requires total number of scholars over the five years count divisible by those in receipt of such fellowship, it would take at least 2 to 3 years for a university to meet the required benchmark to be safe to apply for the “A” series NAAC grade, unless a university already hosts a significant number of UGC NETJRFs awarded by the UGC. A one-year effort might barely get you 1 out of 4 marks in this NAAC metric.
As a top NAAC consultant with demonstrated experience of years, I am of the view that universities who don’t wish to wait for minimum of 2 to 3 years to apply for the NAAC should fill-in IIQA now to reclaim old SSR and its low weightage of this metric and other research metrics. Well, there is still a time to file IIQA, provided you fill up details accurately and be first time or second time correct itself in filling the IIQA. If it doesn’t get accepted, where is the harm? You in any case might have to wait for the next 2 years to build the benchmarked capacity to meet the research challenge. However, it is all up to institutes and their current status.
If a university has taken a final decision not to apply now and to build capacity over the next 2 to 3 years, let me take up this JRF metric today and share my views on how to build numbers of JRF as it has become an important metric with the weightage having been doubled in the new NAAC version.
Building JRF Numbers: The views of some of the best NAAC accreditation consultants
*If institute doesn’t wish to pay INR @33 K per month to the identified PhD scholars based on benchmarks, such an institute should motivate students doing Masters and prepare a good number of them for the UGC NET-JRF and provide them extra classes for clearing the JRF exam. A few initiatives in this regard could be as follows:-
*Be sure, they register for the examination on the portal in the final year of the Masters just prior to exam, and submit results later. I think some can register even now up to 17 Jan 23 for the next upcoming UGC NET JRF examination.
* Prepare attractive and enabling schemes to gravitate them to JRF, like free accommodation, free conveyance, teaching assistance etc.
*Advertise for the NET-JRF qualified students to enrol in your university. Also upload the Adv. on the website.
*Form multi-disciplinary research groups and upload university’s research plans on the website.
*Set targets for the Dean Research to meet the set annual numbers.
*On joining of JRFs fill up all Annexures mandated by the UGC and submit to the UGC promptly and let the UGC financial fellowship support get transferred to their accounts.
*Assign projects, research guides and mentors to the JRFs and initiate such other schemes to lead them effectively to do PhD.
* Dean Research must therefore develop an effective eco-system for the JRFs. This incidentally is the most neglected area in our HEIs.
* UGC provides JRF awards in Science, languages, Humanities & Social Sciences”. Hence HEIs to direct focus on the above disciplines.
* Please remember, a student qualified in UGC “NET Asst Prof” is not eligible for the JRF grant.
* Important* Well, if a university has enough funds to provide UGC equivalent monthly amount to the PhD scholars, it is a widely held view of the leading NAAC consultants that such universities should go for it. While doing so, HEIs should keep in mind the NAAC laid down benchmarks for the numbers. It would be utmost essential to show evidence of monthly/quarterly transfer of the laid down amount to the PhD scholars accounts backed by statement of audited accounts of the respective years. Prepare a policy. HEIs must NOT show teachers or students as recipients of amount as permitted only to PhD scholars.
In my view as a NAAC mentor, the entire exercise should be led by the Dean Research !