ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Academic Performance Indicators Regime and Its Follies

The University Grants Commission does not seem to view higher education and research as having anything to do with the culture of intellectual activity. Rather it looks at research as a matter of regulation, monitoring and measurement of academic "output". This reflects in the UGC's policy to evolve universal and homogeneous evaluation indices for academic performance where productivity is mistaken for creativity.

During a recent visit to one college in the interior part of central India for a conference, I was surprised to see a state-of-the-art podium with built-in audio and video players. The mikes functioned perfectly without the usual screeching and interruption. Development has reached every nook and corner of the country, it seemed. But the materiality of technology is misleading; it had nothing to do with the content of the presentations, nor did it generate any discussion in the sessions that followed. College teachers had sophisticated mobile phones in which they stored their notes. Proceedings of a previous conference in a CD containing 150 articles were released. With no title, but only an ISBN number, the CD cover said “double blind peer reviewed carrying 7.5 API (Academic Performance Indicators) marks”. The contributors to the proceedings were discussing the money they paid to get their paper into the collection which was never reviewed; the collection was put together haphazardly and several papers did not make sense.

Measuring Academic Performance

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