Why don’t Indian universities fare well when it comes to World Rankings?

India produces some of the best talents in the world but not a single Indian University comes under the first 200 universities of the world. Why? Experts have time and again, voiced concerns over the poor showing of Indian universities when it comes to the world rankings. A number of researchers and surveys over the years have shown that Indians are continuously lagging behind in the educational aspects such as faculty-student ratio, placement percentages etc. Even the much-lauded-heavens-alike IITs do not figure in top 200. The reasons for it are many. Here are a few pointers that show why we don’t make it to the top despite the legitimate potential and adequate talents.

Student-Faculty Ratio-: An important parameter that is considered while making the rankings’ list is the Student Faculty ratio. Most of the Indian Universities fare very poorly on this front. While some blame could be put upon the measures undertaken to strengthen the student base and strength, Global Rankings’ authorities often have very stringent criteria for defining who qualifies as a faculty and who doesn’t. While most of the Indian Universities make it a point to add research scholars and post-doctoral candidates into their faculties’ list to better their student-faculty ratio, Western world doesn’t recognize such criterion and considers only full-time faculties while compiling the list, thereby leading to such correspondent rankings.

Substandard Research Culture-: Research Citations and post doctoral researches are the ever-present factors that are used while figuring out these lists, but here again the Indian Universities miss out on a number of factors including inadequate research, poor funds etc again leading to the poor showing in the Global Rankings.

Little Internationalization-: Another significant factor that affects these rankings is the international presence. The number of faculties and the overseas students make for a greater diverse group and add to the ethnicity of the Institute. Indian Universities do abysmally on this front with none of them figuring even in the top 700. Much of it could be attributed to the fact that the administration has never been too keen to assimilate these elements in their education policy. With the Universities in India too strained to make place for their domestic demands, the opinions remain divided on whether the foreign students should be incorporated.

Scarce Industry Collaboration-: Much has been done and is being done to make Indian institutes in sync with the Industry requirements, yet when made a comparison with the global standards, collaboration of institutes with the Industry still paints a dismal picture. This is however a key component while deciding the global rankings. Western universities do well when it comes to industry collaborations and getting their students placed while their Indian counterparts lag much behind on this.

In the nutshell, it can be inferred that Indian universities do not deliver when it comes to performing on the world stage and fare typically worse in case of the global rankings. This is not to say that our universities or Institute’s lack potential or a dearth of knowledge but particularly do not perform well in few parameters that make up the world rankings’ criterion. Research is one such area where focus needs to be put if we want to better our rankings. Most of our universities and students are unwilling to pursue research and go for jobs right after their graduation. They fail to meet the International standards and are unclear about their roles and responsibilities. Although experts and academicians differ on whether we should pay heed to these rankings or not, one cannot be completely oblivious to the fact that these rankings do indicate some trends and can be a true measure of the potential our universities hold. Therefore, to compete with the world we need to start paying attention to what is that we are doing wrong and what all needs to be done from our side. Only then, can we dream of a world-class educational system that would cater not only to our domestic demands but also that of the World.


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