The Ministry of Education released the NIRF (National Institutional Ranking Framework) 2021 on Thursday, The University of Delhi ranked 12th-falling from 11th last year- behind Jawaharlal Nehru University(JNU) and Jamia Millia Islamia(JMI), which have bagged the second and sixth positions respectively. PC Joshi, DU’s acting vice-chancellor commented on Delhi University’s Rank saying that the low teacher-student ratio may be the reason for DU’s slip.
Joshi told the PTI, “The reason for the slip in the rankings is the low score in teacher-student ratio. There are around 850 posts lying vacant in the university and while other universities were able to recruit, we were not able to. It has been taken by the education minister on mission mode and he said all universities should carry out recruitments.”
An analysis report released by the Hindustan Times reveals possible reasons for DU’s ranking this year: Lack of enough permanent teachers leading to a low teacher-student ratio; fewer faculty with PhD experience; poor utilisation of financial resources and assistance for economically and socially challenged students; and fewer patents and research project outputs.
University officials also said that due to the lengthy nature of the recruitment process and red tape, the number of teachers appointed during the previous University administration was low. Joshi took over as acting vice-chancellor in October last year and has recruited 44 teachers so far.
As a solution to the problem, DU has been appointing ad hoc teachers on a contract basis, renewable after every four months. Currently, they number about 4,100 and constitute nearly 40% of the university’s teaching strength of around 10,000 – way higher than the limit of 10% set by the government.
Launched by the ministry of human resource development (now ministry of education) in 2016, NIRF is a framework to rank higher education institutions across the country based on parameters of teaching-learning and resources (30% weightage), research and professional practices (30%), graduation outcomes (20%), outreach and inclusivity (10%), and perception (10%).
DU has a combined score of 25.01 out of 80 points under the three sub-categories of faculty-student ratio with emphasis on permanent faculty (FSR), combined metric for Faculty with PhD (or equivalent) and Experience (FQE), and Financial Resources and their Utilisation (FRU). This score is low compared to Jamia’s 47.45 and JNU’s 50.7 in the same sub-categories.
The University has scored 42.65 in teaching, learning and resources (TLR), way behind JNU (71.19) and Jamia Millia Islamia (66.44).
In the outreach and inclusivity parameter, which looks at diversity in terms of gender and students from other states and countries; facilities for physically challenged students and economically challenged students, DU scored 59.59 points out of 100 while JNU and Jamia scored 73.36 and 72.35 points, respectively.
However, in the research and professional practice category, NIRF scores indicate that DU has more publications, citations, patents, and output-oriented projects than both JNU and Jamia. However, all three universities have scored abysmally low in the patents and output-oriented subcategories — their scores are in the range of four to seven points out of 30.
The NIRF Ranking 2021 has five of the top 10 colleges of Delhi University in the ranking. Miranda House continued to retain the first rank for the fifth year in a row, followed by Lady Shri Ram College For Women which secured rank two for the second year in a row.