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PhD mandate relaxation for assistant professor’s post may improve faculty quality – Times of India

The debate is on if PhD have to be a key requisite for an assistant professor’s post or this mandate have to be eliminated. The Centre has amended the University Grants Commission (UGC) laws to delay the necessary requirement of a PhD to July 2023 owing to the Covid-19 pandemic. Currently, the assistant professor’s post, which is an entry-degree place throughout universities, might be crammed by grasp’s diploma holders who’re UGC NET (National Eligibility Test) certified.

In 2018, the Centre had launched the UGC ‘Minimum Qualifications for Appointment of Teachers and Other Academic Staff in Universities and Colleges and Measures for the Maintenance of Standards in Higher Education’ Regulation, which required all candidates for the assistant professor’s post to have a doctoral diploma. It supplied a 3-yr interval for buying the PhD diploma, stating additional that the necessary stipulation can be launched from July 1, 2021, for the 2021-22 educational yr. But then, the UGC has now delayed this mandate by one other two years, giving potential candidates for assistant professor’s posts extra time to finish their PhDs. PhD requirement was one of the hindrances in the direction of filling up vacant faculty positions as a consequence of which round 6,000 sanctioned positions are mendacity vacant on the Central Universities alone.

Marker of success


Yogesh Singh, vice-chancellor, University of Delhi (DU), says, “A PhD degree for the assistant professor’s post is important for the quality of teaching-learning. But when faculty persons are recruited, two aspects are taken into consideration -academic scholarship and teaching abilities. It is not as if PhD is the only marker of an academic’s success. In research-driven universities, a PhD degree should be a must, but in colleges, a UGC NET qualified candidate can work just as well. In DU, for instance, we have already advertised assistant professor’s positions where NET qualified candidates may stand as good a chance as PhD candidates. While UGC NET has improved the overall quality of teachers at entry-level posts, there was a time when UGC NET did not exist, and yet good teachers were recruited in the university system.”

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Creating proper expertise pool


B J Rao, vice-chancellor, University of Hyderabad, says that PhD ought to be an important qualification for educating positions at PG and post PG ranges. “A relaxation may affect the quality of research and teaching. However, the institutions will be always looking to recruit the best among the talent available, irrespective of prescribed qualifications,” Rao provides. He explains that grasp’s diploma holders who’re UGC NET certified are worthy sufficient to be thought of for assistant professor’s posts however in restricted spheres of instructional pursuits. “It is important that meritorious applicants are selected.”

The present relaxation, he says, will widen the applying pool, however the onus to create the proper expertise pool will depend upon a considered choice course of. “India is a talent surplus country hence degree criterion alone cannot assess a candidate. The qualities of academic excellence, proactiveness, innovative thinking, perseverance, mentoring ability etc also matter.” PhD ought to be necessary for promotion aside from minimal qualifying service prescribed within the 2018 UGC laws for affiliate professor and professor ranges, Rao says.

PhD not a should


A PhD diploma as a prerequisite situation for assistant professor’s post may be fascinating however not crucial, says Bhushan Patwardhan, former vice chairman, University Grants Commission, and nationwide analysis professor – Ayush, Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, Savitribai Phule Pune University. “It is unlikely to compromise the quality of faculty in HEI and in fact, may improve the quality of teachers by bringing more of those who are genuinely interested in the teaching profession. The condition of PhD for becoming a teacher has very weak logic. This mandatory prerequisite has led to desperation to do PhD, which in turn has resulted in commercial shops openly selling these degrees,” he provides.

PhD, based on Patwardhan, is basically a analysis diploma. It ought to be pursued solely by those that have analysis aptitude and are eager to pursue educational analysis careers. Such PhD holders may also be formed into good academics as a result of educating and analysis go hand in hand in a number of disciplines particularly on the PG degree, he provides.

“Already many teachers may have entered the HEIs with poor quality PhD degrees. It is hoped the government does not simply waive off the PhD as a prerequisite condition for assistant professor’s positions without preparing a robust mechanism to ensure selection of faculty based on predefined criteria – one that is dependent on academic merit, scholarship, commitment, nationalism and integrity,” he says.

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