On Monday, April 8, the government released its rankings for Indian colleges and universities. Delhi University’s Miranda House ranks at the top of all colleges, and Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras ranked first among all universities.
The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry has developed the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) that ranks higher education institutions across India.
Engineering institutions make up the majority of the overall top 10. Some colleges like Hindu College and Hans Raj improved their ranks, while others like St. Stephen’s and Delhi University have tumbled down the scale.
How is NIRF measured?
The NIRF ranking is based on five broad, weighted metrics that have sub-parts, as well.
The parameters are “Teaching, Learning, and Resources,” “Research and Professional Practices,” “Graduation Outcomes,” “Outreach and Inclusivity,” and “Perception”.
Teaching, Learning, and Resources includes indicators like student-to-faculty ratio, budget and utilisation, number of faculty members with a PhD or equivalent, and strength of students.
Research and Professional Practice measures the number and quality of publications authored by the university and how many patents it has filed, published, granted, and licensed.
For Graduation Outcomes, the NIRF looks at the percentage of placements, graduates’ median salary, and admittance rate into top universities. It also considers the number of graduates and passing PhD students.
For Outreach and Inclusivity, the parameters include the percentage of women, out-of-state, economically and socially challenged, and physically-disabled students.
In terms of Perception, the rankings take into account perception of the university from employers, research investors, and the public, as well as competitiveness in admission of postgraduate and PhD students.
This data is self-reported by the colleges because India lacks a third-party database with the required information.
The institutions must also store the data on their website for three years. If they fail to do so, they will be barred from the survey for two years. The NIRF can also do physical checks of an institution’s records and audits.
“Emphasis here is on identifying data that the institution can easily provide or is easy to obtain from third party sources and easily verifiable, where verification is needed. This is important in the interest of transparency”, says the HRD Ministry.
Only those institutions that have at least 1000 enrolled students and are funded by the government are eligible for this survey. Those that have less than 1000 students are only given a discipline specific rank.
Key points in the NIRF rankings
100 colleges were considered for overall rankings.
Of the overall top 10 universities in India, seven are various branches of IIT. IIT-Madras ranks first. Indian Institute of Science, IIT-Delhi, and IIT-Bombay are second, third, and fourth respectively.
Following them, in order, are IIT-Kharagpur, IIT-Kanpur, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), IIT-Roorkee, IIT-Guwahati, and Banaras Hindu University.
Calcutta University, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Savitribai Phule Pune University, Jadavpur University, Aligarh Muslim University, Jamia Millia Islamia, and Delhi university all rank in the top 20.
In the college rankings, Miranda House topped the list, followed by Hindu College, Presidency College, St. Stephen’s College, and Lady Shri Ram College for Women.
Miranda House has held the top rank for the third consecutive year. A number of colleges improved their ranks from last year: Hans Raj and Lady Shri Ram College both moved up three slots to the ninth and fifth rank respectively. Hindu College also improved by two ranks.
However, not all were as fortunate. St. Stephen’s slipped by two spots to the fourth rank and Delhi University fell five ranks to the 13th spot.
Loyola College, Chennai, Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC), Delhi, and St. Xavier’s College, Calcutta also rank among the top 10.
Rhea Arora is a Staff Writer at Qrius.