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Wednesday, April 01, 2020

Tracking system in medical colleges for ‘ghost’ faculty

There have been so many complaints from students about many private colleges not having any real faculty in critical subjects.

Written by Pritha Chatterjee | New Delhi | Published: May 21, 2015 4:28:35 am

The Medical Council of India (MCI) is all set to revive a project on centralised faculty identification and tracking for all medical colleges in the country. The project aims at maintaining a database of faculty, how many classes they take and the time spent on taking classes.

Sources said a sub-committee under the MCI studied the project, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) system, which was started and dropped in 2009 during the UPA government. All medical colleges, including private ones, have been informed about the project.

It was conceptualised to address complaints of “ghost faculty” who were “arranged” by medical colleges during scheduled inspections by MCI teams. “We received such complaints from several inspectors. Even though they knew the college did not have the stipulated number of faculty, administration in private colleges would arrange teachers during inspections,” a senior member of the MCI executive committee said.

This, sources said, had repeatedly been mentioned by several experts as a reason for the drop in the quality of medical education in private medical colleges across the country.

“…During annual inspections, medical colleges arrange for ghost faculty who actually are not on the rolls. There have been so many complaints from students about many private colleges not having any real faculty in critical subjects, especially in PG courses of super-specialised degrees…,” the official said.

Sources said the project was dropped in 2009 after being vetted by the then board of governors of MCI because it was considered too expensive and “not very feasible”.  Sources said, in the project, system records would be maintained about every faculty and the time they spend in the college — including time spent on every lecture.

“This will also address the problem of classes not being actually held or being finished earlier than the stipulated time. Now, the time a teacher spends in taking a class will be monitored. So another complaint we face about syllabus not being completed despite classes being taken throughout the year will  be addressed,” he explained.

According to the notification sent by MCI to all colleges, the vendor identified for the project will provide every college with a 13 core processor, 4 GB RAM, 1 TB hard disc computer, a preferably leased line broadband connection, and a biometric identification system.
The information about the faculties will be integrated with their Aadhar card numbers, from where the database for fingerprint authentication will be taken.

An engineer from the vendor will visit every college on identified days to set up the project.

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