Though the state government is yet to pass a resolution for splitting large universities in the state, the Mumbai University (MU), in its academic council meeting on Monday evening approved the proposal for its bifurcation.
MU is set to form clusters of five to six of its affiliated colleges, and distribute some of its responsibilities to “lead” colleges. The lead college will be responsible for “quality enhancement” among the cluster’s member colleges. A proposal in this regard was tabled before the academic council members on Monday.
Naresh Chandra, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of MU, said, “The decision was taken keeping in mind quality improvement in the functioning of the varsity and its affiliated colleges.”
In 2013, the cluster concept was introduced for distributing the work of assessing exam papers. However, now the proposal aims at handing additional responsibilities to colleges to ease the burden on MU. The major responsibilities will include ensuring upkeep of academic standards.
The dean of commerce, T P Madhu Nair, has drafted the proposal. “As the number of colleges affiliated to the Mumbai university is huge, it is becoming difficult to manage them. The lead college concept will ensure better management. The norms have been framed for this new system, all we have to do now is identify lead colleges,” said Nair.
The lead college in a cluster will be responsible for conducting regular workshops on syllabus change for member-colleges in its cluster. They will also motivate member colleges in initiating quality enhancement measures, and for going in for accreditation by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC).
The lead colleges can also monitor the process of internal assessment and ensure that modalities are followed. The principal of a lead college can guide the colleges during admissions. Faculty exchange may also be initiated to provide the benefit of ‘expert lectures’ to students of relatively newer colleges.
“For a college to be the lead among the cluster, it needs to be accredited and it must have an approved principal,” Nair said.
Currently, 681 colleges are affiliated to Mumbai University.