Survey reveals worrying trend on tertiary level gross enrolment ratio

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Published: September 28, 2019 1:34:06 AM

So, unless the quality of graduates, post-graduates and doctorates improve, and higher education begins to reflect industry needs, getting more students attracted to higher education and pushing up the tertiary GER seems a tough call.

So, unless the quality of graduates, post-graduates and doctorates improve, and higher education begins to reflect industry needs, getting more students attracted to higher education and pushing up the tertiary GER seems a tough call.

The All India Survey of Higher Education 2018-19 reveals a rather worrying trend—tertiary level gross enrolment ratio (GER) has remained doggedly sticky over 4-5 years. It was 24.5 in 2014-15 and is now at 26.3. In contrast, China was able to improve its GER from 39% in 2014 to 51% in 2017. While there has been healthy addition to the higher education infrastructure—there were just 642 universities in the country in 2011-12 and now there are 993—most of this has been due to the private sector.

The government must focus on improving the quality of higher education and matching higher education offerings to industry needs. The unemployment rate is the highest for those with university level education, as per CMIE data. So, unless the quality of graduates, post-graduates and doctorates improve, and higher education begins to reflect industry needs, getting more students attracted to higher education and pushing up the tertiary GER seems a tough call.

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