Shabir Ahmad Lone

Abstract:  In this research paper an attempt has been made to highlight increased institutional capacity in terms of diverse levels of Universities and colleges in the country. India has one of the largest higher Education systems which saw a remarkable increase since independence. In terms of enrolment, India has the third largest higher education system in the world after China and USA.  It is expected that India will top the USA in next five years and China in next fifteen years to be the largest system of higher education in the world.
 Keywords: Higher Education, Growth, Quality Education


  • To make an analysis of higher education system in India.

 Research Methodology:

The paper is based on the secondary data which has been taken from various government reports on higher education, Journals, Magazines and reference books. In addition to this pertinent information has been collected from existing research material to make an analysis of the overall structure and expansion of Indian Higher Education system.
 After understanding the importance, need and returns from higher education for sociocultural and economic development there has been huge allocation of resources by most countries of the world. According to UNESCO Report in the 21st century “higher education is the mandate to bridge the knowledge gap between countries and communities enriching dialogues between people. The modern higher education system of India is only 140 years old when the first three universities were set up in 1857 under British rule. The policy guidelines which shaped the scope and role of universities in India were given by Lord Macaulay and Woods Despatch (1854).During 1857-1947there was slow development of Higher Educations in India which were mostly set up in administrative headquarters and port towns. The thrust of development was mainly on liberal arts education while little importance where given to science education. The pace of development of higher education was very slow which is evident from the fact that only 18 were set up in a period of 90 years. Since independence Higher Education in India has acquired special significance. This is to be measured in terms of what the society expects from it and the fulfilment of these expectations in terms of its requirements. As we know that 21st century, has been acknowledged worldwide as the Knowledge Society, every nation knows that it is surviving in an increasingly competitive and globalised international environment where the information, infrastructure, research and innovation systems, education and lifelong learning and regulatory framework are fundamental variables which have immense importance.
 Both the table No. 2 and fig.No 1 and 2 shows the expansion of higher education in India. The number of universities increased from 30 universities in1950-51 to 564 universities in2011- 12. While the number of colleges increased from 695 to 33023.It indicates that there is expansion of high education In India. The Central and state Government have taken initiatives to promote higher education.
 Higher education includes ‘all types of studies, training or training for research at the post-secondary level, provided by universities or other educational establishments that are approved as institutions of higher education by the competent State authorities’.” By 2030, India will be amongst the youngest nations in the world. With nearly 140 million people in the college-going age group, one in every four graduates in the world will be a product of the Indian higher education system. By 2030, the already existing challenges for Indian higher education like access, infrastructure, modern standard of laboratories, equity and quality will    overcome if we will alter our model of higher education and frame it in such a way which will enhance the efficiency and quality which is the demanded in the education market of the world. Regarding the importance of higher education Dr.B.R Ammbedkar said, “That no plan for the future development of the country can be deemed to be complete which does not provide for technical and scientific training. This is the age of machines it is not those countries in which technical and scientific training has risen to highest pitch that will survive in the struggle that will commence when the war is over, for maintaining decent standard of living for their people.
At present most of the Indian colleges and universities lack in even basic key variables like Under-investment in libraries, information technology, laboratories which make it very difficult to provide top quality instruction or engage in cutting-edge research. If we want to speed up our path of development then the need of the hour is to bridge this gape at priority bases. With the continuous efforts of central, state and private sector we see a remarkable increase in institutional capacity in Higher Education sector. It is because of these efforts India now ranks second in the world in terms of enrolment of students after China; third being USA. No doubt the expansion of higher educational institutions is proceeding smoothly which helped in correcting the mismatch between actual and required intake capacity of Higher Education in the country. But still the overall scenario of higher education does not match with the global Quality standards. Hence, there is enough scope for an increased valuation of the Quality of the country’s educational institutions.


After analysing the growth and development of higher education in India it clearly indicates that Indian higher education system is still immature need of hour is to bring reforms to impart quality education. Quality education is possible when facilities, resources and technologies are upgraded. Quality of teaching depends upon quality of teachers. According to   Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh “the time has come to create a second wave of institution building and of excellence in the fields of research and capability building” We need an educational system that is modern, liberal and can adapt the changing needs of a changing society.


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