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

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Faculty Development Training and Quality of Higher Education

The University Grants Commission introduced the Academic Staff Orientation Scheme in 1987 to set up academic staff colleges (now rechristened as human resource development centres). While the scheme is still operational, courses offered under it are hardly contributing towards quality improvement in higher education.

Higher education in India has witnessed phenomenal growth since independence in terms of number of institutions, teachers, and students. While this growth is no doubt praiseworthy, what has remained a matter of concern is the quality of higher education that is being delivered. Poor financial investment in the development of infrastructure and of faculty resources often explains why concerns exist around the quality of higher education in India. However, there also exist different non-financial factors that explain the poor quality of higher education in the country. The nature and quality of continuous in-service training that faculty members of state-run teaching institutions have to go through is one non-financial component of higher education that is often not given the attention that it deserves. While the faculty development training programme was conceived with grand aims of making education socially relevant and improving the quality of higher education, what it has ended up becoming is primarily a ritual (Jayaram 2003) that needs to be completed by the organisers so as to satisfy the requirements of the funder, the University Grants Commission (UGC), and by faculty participants so as to meet the conditions of promotion in their employment. What is worse is that in an ideologically charged sociopolitical environment, this politics of ritualisation of training programmes may get further complicated with the hegemonic entry of ideologies of dominant collectives. With stakeholders attributing such a restricted meaning to this training exercise, it is not a surprise that concerns prevail around its quality. It is, therefore, important to understand this politics and its influence on the nature of training programmes for faculty members.

In-service Training

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Updated On : 8th Nov, 2019


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