AICTE bids farewell to Dual Degree Integrated Management Courses

aicte_2In the academic year, 2012-13, AICTE with a laudable noble objective to provide students with an opportunity to gain managerial skills and encourage them start and run own ventures with good business knowledge had permitted students to start a 5 year Integrated Dual Degree Management Course, leading to an undergraduate degree in 3 or 4 years, (BM – Bachelor’s degree in Management / BAM -Bachelor’s degree in Applied Management) followed by a Master’s degree in five years (MAM – Master’s degree in Applied Management).

In the year, 2014, UGC released revised specification of degrees, u/s 22 of the UGC Act, 1956 and also the guidelines for Dual Degree Programmes. In respect of the Management Courses, though it did not directly refer to BM/BAM/MAM Courses, but it did refer to other Management Courses and directed that the same be restricted as BBA / MBA, with appropriate parenthesis.

AICTE, after a gap of 2 years, constituted a Committee constituted a Committee to examine the continuation of Five Years Dual Degree Programme (s) in Management (lntegrated) introduced in the AY 2012- 13 by AICTE with the nomenclature as BM/BAM/MAM, since the same were not in line with UGC approved programme (s).

It seems the report has come and now AICTE has directed the Institutes conducting the Dual Degree Course that no fresh admission should be conducted from Academic Year 2016-2017 onwards and the Dual Degree course has to be closed completely. However, the Institutions who were running dual degree course (s) have been permitted to conduct five [05] years Integrated MBA courses in lieu of five (05) years dual degree courses of MBA/MAM introduced by AICTE. As the Institute would now be conducting BBA and MBA Courses, they have been introduce additional supplementary subjects in the curricula of BM/BAM /MAM to come up with same standards of BBA and MBA course (s).

As regards, safeguarding the interest of the existing students, already admitted in the BM/BAM/MAM programme (s) during 2012-13 to 2015-16, AICTE has asked the Institute to provide exit option at the end of the three (03) years for the students, who have joined the dual degree courses in 2015-16 and prior to that, by awarding a BBA degree instead of BM degree. But in respect of those students, who have completed 4 years, has to undergo one more year and will be awarded MBA degree after completion of five (05) years, as there is no exit option at the end of fourth year.

The students graduating this year under MAM and completing 5 years of their study may be awarded MBA Degree.

EduLegaL View

When will two regulators having concurrent jurisdictions, start working hand-in-hand in this Country to save the students from hassles and harassment. UGC announced policy in 2014, AICTE implements in 2016. What a criminal wastage of time ?

When will the regulators in our country learn to make policy announcements concerning admission of students prior to commencement of academic year, so that a student can plan his pursuit, an Institute can plan its calendar?

We can keep asking …. ?

Ravi Bhardwaj |

AICTE lays down Study Leave Guidelines for Teachers

AICTE has laid down comprehensive guidelines for availing Study Leave for the Teachers and other Academic Staff in Institutions approved by AICTE, who have joined the teaching services without without M. Tech./ Ph. D or other higher qualification.

The Guidelines prescribe that Study leave may be granted to pursue for study (M.E./M. Tech./ Ph. D) or research in the relevant discipline after a minimum of three years in regular service including the probation period. Study Leave keeping in mind the availability of teachers in the discipline and the vacant positions so that the regular academic work is not disturbed while granting study leave. Study leave shall be granted by the Institution on the recommendation of the concerned Head of the Department.

The paid period of study leave should be two/three years for Master/ Doctorial level respectively. Two years may be given in the first instance, extendable by one more year for Ph. D program. Any extension beyond the stipulated period shall be treated as leave without Pay.

However, such benefit can be availed only once during the entire service and will not be available to a teacher who is due to retire within five years of the date on which he/she is expected to return to duty. Study leave granted to a teacher shall be deemed to be cancelled in case it is not availed of within 12 months of its sanction. Provided that where study leave granted has been so cancelled, the teacher may apply again for such leave.

A teacher availing Study Leave shall continue to receive scholarship, fellowship or other financial assistance, in addition to the Salary being received by him at his home Institution. However, in the case of an Indian fellowship, which exceeds the salary of the teacher, the salary would be forfeited.

Study leave may be combined with earned leave, half-Pay leave, extraordinary leave or vacation, provided that the earned leave at the credit of the teacher shall be availed at the discretion of the teacher.

Another salient feature of the Scheme is that a teacher, who is selected to a higher post during study leave, will be placed in that position and get the higher scale only after joining the post and shall on his/her return and re-joining the service of the Institute be eligible to the benefit(s) of the annual increment(s) which he/she would have earned in the course of time if he/she had not proceeded on study leave. No teacher shall however, be eligible to receive arrears of increments.

Study leave shall count as service for pension/contributory provident fund purposes, provided the teacher joins back in the Institute on the expiry of his/her study leave.

After the leave has been sanctioned, the teacher shall execute a bond that he/she shall serve the Institute for a continuous period of at least three years to be calculated from the date of his/her resuming duty on expiry of the study leave. If the Faculty, fails to observe the conditions, amount paid to him might become refundable to the Institute

The teacher shall submit to the Head of the Institution, the progress report at a frequent interval of 6 months in his/her studies through his/her supervisor. This report shall reach the Head of the Institution of within one month of the expiry of every six months term of the study leave. If the report does not reach within the specified time, the payment of leave salary may be deferred till the receipt of such report.

EduLegaL View

The purpose of study leave is to enable a Faculty to pursue a course or to undertake research, which would improve his potential to serve the Institution and the Students. In that light, this is really a welcome move and will help streamline that process.

But there are few practical issues, How many of the Institutions, do actually follow this and How many of the teachers, do actually return to the Institutions, which granted the Study Leave. The answer is “very few”, which demoralizes such liberal policies.

Let us see, how this New Policy, takes effect !

Ravi Bhardwaj |

AICTE notifies series of reforms, recognises shortage of qualified faculty, allows relaxing PH.D. Criteria, recognises inter-disciplinary learning, and much more …

AICTE had in the year 2010 notified Regulations relating to Pay Scales, Service Conditions and Qualifications for the Teachers in Technical Institutions. In the year 2012, it had also passed Regulations for Career Advancement Scheme for the Teachers and other Academic Staff in Technical Institutions.

However, several issues were raised out of the implementation of these Regulations and Institutions made representations to AICTE, which prompted AICTE to reform the existing Regulations and clarify some issues.

  • Recognising the importance of inter-disciplinary learning, it has clarified that Ph.D acquired from inter- disciplinary Centres/ Departments in relevant area in relevant discipline in which faculty has acquired BE/ B. Tech. and ME/ M. Tech. Degree can be considered by the Institutions.
  • Realising the shortage of competent and qualified faculty, in filed of Pharmacy, it has clarified that qualification of M. Pharm (Quality Assurance) to the post of Lecturer/Asst. Professor in Pharmacology can be considered by the Institution. Similarly, in field of Hotel Management and Catering Technology, it has allowed the Institutions to consider relaxing Ph.D qualification in HMCT Programme due to scarcity of Masters/ Ph.D degree personnel in HMCT.
  • The qualification of Ph.D acquired for the various level of posts directly after B.E/B.Tech. awarded by a University following the process of registration, course work and evaluation etc. as prescribed by UGC or awarded by the Institutes of national importance (i.e. IITs/IISc/ NITs etc.), duly recognized by the MHRD can also be considered for the appointment of faculty/Principal/ Director in Technical Institutions, provided the candidate should have obtained at least first class at Bachelor’s level in Engineering /Technology.
  • MS degree acquired from NIT, IIT and IISC Bangalore etc., can be considered equivalent to ME/ M. Tech., for appointment as Asst. Professor in Engineering disciplines, provided MS degree has been acquired from the Institutes of national importance as recognised by MHRD and the basic degree should be BE/B. Tech. in relevant branch and in case if awarded by an accredited foreign Universities/ Institutions shall be considered provided that the equivalency of MS degree has been approved by AIU.
  • Recognised integrated B.E/B.Tech. Degree, Integrated B/E./B.Tech.-MBA and Integrated B.E./B.Tech.-M.Tech., and Dual Degrees awarded shall be recognised for direct recruitment & promotion of faculty under CAS.
  • It has also laid down guidelines for considering Industrial experience for appointment of faculty. Though it say that working experience in public sector undertaking is preferred, however it clarifies that work experience in private sector can also be considered provided the Industry has a successful continuous standing of at least 10 years. The area of operation of Industry shall be related to the relevant field of discipline. 50% of the total service rendered in industries shall be considered as an equivalent to teaching experience provided total experience is at least 10 years and above.
  • Academic performance index (API) requirement of teachers appointed in Regulatory/ Advisory bodies & Funding Agencies of State/ Central Govt. on deputation/ Lien/Foreign service shall be relaxed and the ACR/self appraisal performance report shall be taken as equivalent to API, provided the candidate has scored at least “Very Good” and above rating in the ACR.

EduLegaL View:

It is good to see that the Regulators have touched the reality and have realized that there is shortage of faculty, according to the qualifications, which have been prescribed by them. This was long awaited measure. Infact this seems to a parallel of acclaimed “economic liberalisation” to “educational liberalisation”.

Ravi Bhardwaj |

Supreme Court further clarifies the restored powers of AICTE

Last year, vide Judgement in April 2013, in the case of Association of Management Colleges, Supreme Court had held that the expression “University” includes “Affiliated Colleges” and hence affiliated colleges offering technical courses are not required to take approval from AICTE for commencing and conducting technical courses. The Apex Court further went ahead to clarify that MBA is not covered within the expression “technical education”.

Thereafter UGC on 23.12.2013, published Draft Regulations of Approval Process for Technical and Professional Courses by Universities for public opinion.

This started the reversal process of the April 2013 Judgement of the Apex Court. Some of the Institutions, offering Post Graduate Diploma Courses in Management, who felt their academic autonomy, is being infringed approached Supreme Court seeking Direction to AICTE to continue to operate as the regulatory authority of the PGDM institutions for the Academic Year 2014-2015.

The direction sought was conceded by the AICTE in the proceedings by making a statement that AICTE continues to operate as a regulatory authority of the PGDM Institutions.

Thereafter, a substantive Writ Petition came to be filed again before Supreme Court by Orissa Technical Colleges Association and the Apex Court speaking through Division Bench of Hon’ble Justice R M Lodha and Hon’ble Justice Kurian Joseph, noted that averment made in the Affidavit by AICTE that Approval Process Handbook (2013-14) is presently in force and the same has been extended and made applicable for the Academic Year 2014-15 as well.

The Apex Court therefore vide its Order dated 17.04.2014 adjudicating on interim relief ordered that:

“AICTE shall now proceed in accordance with the Approval Process Handbook for the Academic Year 2014-15 insofar as the members of the petitioner Association and all colleges and institutions situated similarly to the members of the petitioner Association are concerned and necessary orders shall be issued by AICTE within ten days.”

However, the Order of the Hon’ble Supreme Court required further clarity and therefore vide Order dated 09.05.2014, Apex Court speaking through 4 Judge Bench of Hon’ble The Chief Justice, Hon’ble Mr. Justice A.K. Patnaik, Hon’ble Mr. Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan, Hon’ble Mr. Justice Surinder Singh Nijjar, clarified as under:

“The order dated 17.4.2014 passed by this Court is clarified and it is directed that prior approval of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) is compulsory and mandatory for conduct of a technical course including the MBA/Management Course by an existing affiliated Technical College and also new Technical College which will require affiliation by a University for conduct of its Technical Courses/Programmes for the academic year 2014-15.”

The clarification given by the Supreme Court and clear and unambiguous to clearly state that Technical Courses including Management Courses conducted by Affiliated Courses require prior approval of AICTE and Judgement in April 2013 in a manner stands reversed.

Ravi Bhardwaj

Principal Consultant, EduLegaL

Engineering Colleges challenge AICTE Rule for Mandatory Purchase of Foreign Journals

Engineering college in Tamilnadu have moved the Madras High Court against a direction from the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to about 5,000 such institutions in the country to pay between Rs 13 lakh to Rs 15 lakh as subscription to a foreign company for e-books.

It is mentioned in the petition that Council’s new approval process for the academic year 2012-2013 colleges made it mandatory for colleges to subscribe to e-journals of a particular foreign company and pay in foreign currency such as US dollar, Euro and British pound.

It further mentions that the institutions in the country would end up paying a total amount of about Rs 1,500 crore annually to the firm, the association pointed out that there were over 700 reputed e-journals, both Indian and foreign, available free of cost for research.

It is alleged that the AICTE has “arbitrarily” been insisting on purchase of selected foreign e-journals at an exorbitant cost, that too through a private agency.

During previous years, technical institutions had the option of subscribing to foreign e-journals through Indian National Digital Library in Engineering Sciences and Technology (INDEST)-AICTE Consortium, an initiative of the Union Human Resources Development ministry.

Business Schools send Notice to AICTE on CMAT and GMAT

Prominent Business Schools have sent a legal notice to All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) seeking clarification on CMAT and inclusion of GMAT Examination amongst the list of exams approved for PGDM admissions.
The notice takes reference of the interim order passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of AICTE Vs EPSI which reads, “The PGDM Institutions are at liberty to draw students, who have participated in the five National level entrance tests (CAT, MAT, XAT, ATMA, JMET) of State level entrance examinations, if any, conducted by the States.”
It is mentioned in the notice that despite the order of the Supreme Court, AICTE has issued advertisements and press releases, which suggests that CMAT is mandatory examination and which are entirely contrary to the interim order of the Hon’ble Supreme court.
The B- Schools have further questioned inclusion of  GMAT in the list of approved tests for PGDM admissions. It is mentioned that pending litigation before the Hon’ble Supreme Court, such announcements are in violation of the interim order of the Supreme Court.
Eventually, the notice has sought AICTE to clarify that CMAT substitutes only the State Government Examinations; and, that 5 Private examinations (CAT, MAT, XAT, ATMA and JMET) are in vogue and are the only other modes of admission to PGDM courses in India, and that GMAT is not recognized for PGDM admissions for the year 2012-2013.

Business Schools object to CMAT by ACITE

The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) had announced launch of its own examination, Common Management Admission Test (CMAT), from February 2012. The Management Institutions have objected to AICTE’s move to make CMAT mandatory for all post-graduate diploma in management (PGDM) institutes.

This July, the Hon’ble Supreme Court, in an interim relief to B-schools, allowed AICTE to conduct its own all-India entrance test. This however, was allowed in addition to the existing five national tests, namely: Common Admission Test (CAT), Management Aptitude Test (MAT), Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT), AIMS Test for Management (ATMA) and Joint Management Entrance Test (JMET). JMET, used for admission to the B-schools run by the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), has since been scrapped. IITs would now be using CAT to admit students to their B-schools.

The B-Schools, which are petitioners before the Hon’ble Supreme Court have spoken in Media that unless the existing matter is resolved by Supreme Court, AICTE has no right to say CMAT will be the only test for 2012. B-schools also say they have already registered themselves with either CAT, ATMA or XAT for the academic year 2012-14.

The AICTE plans to conduct CMAT in 61 cities in the last week of February, 2012. AICTE advertisement in news papers states that CMAT scores would be used for allotment of seats in PGDM institutions for 2012-14 admissions.