The new National Education Policy (NEP) envisages to increase Gross Enrollment Ratio (GER) in higher education in the country to 50 per cent from 27 per cent now and this target can be achieved through greater use of technology and by promoting online and distance learning, AICTE chairman Prof Anil Sahasrabudhe said on Friday.
He also said the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) is translating engineering books in 6 more regional languages besides half a dozen others, including Marathi and Hindi. Sahasrabudhe was addressing a press conference on the sidelines of the inaugural function of an AICTE stakeholder meet organized at Shri Ramdeobaba College of Engineering and Management in Nagpur.
He said greater use of technology, increasing the number of students, online education and opening new colleges, as well as universities, can act as catalyst in achieving the goal of 50 per cent GER in higher education in the next 15 years. “Gross Enrollment Ratio in higher education should be increased from 27 per cent to 50 per cent, whereas since Independence 75 years ago, GER has increased to 27 per cent from 0.7 per cent.
In the next 15 years, NEP 2020 is aiming to double it to 50 per cent from 27 per cent now,” he said. The chairman of the regulatory body called for greater use of technology in the education sector. “This vision (of GER of 50 pc) can be achieved through use of technology and through open and distance learning. All those programmes which can be taught easily using technology must be taught. But, some of them cannot be taught that way and they need hands on experience,” he said.
GER is the ratio of the number of enrollments in higher education to the total population in the age group of 18-23. Sahasrabudhe talked about universities imparting multidisciplinary courses in higher education and said more such institutions should be started in the county. He informed about the launch of engineering courses in regional language in ten states. “NEP has mentioned that not only primary education, but higher education should also be imparted in mother tongues or Indian languages,” he said.
AICTE last year stipulated that good colleges, which have accredited programmes, will get permission for additional seats to teach courses in regional languages, he said. These colleges, without upgrading their existing infrastructure or increasing faculty members, will get an opportunity to increase 30 to 60 seats in mechanical, electronics and computer science branches, Sahasrabudhe said. “This year, AICTE has already given permission to 19 colleges in ten states to impart engineering education in six languages,” he said.
Sahasrabudhe said the council is translating engineering course books in 6 more regional languages. This year, AICTE has already published first year engineering course books in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Marathi, Hindi and Bengali. Similarly, AICTE is working on publishing engineering books in 6 more languages, including Odia, Gujarati, Punjabi and Assamese, he added.