Hyderabad: Dr BR Ambedkar Open University (BRAOU), Hyderabad, is gearing up to go for the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) grading this year. Accordingly, the university administration has constituted an expert committee to undertake the Self-Study Report which is an important aspect for the institutions seeking the NAAC grade.
In order to receive a good grade, the university is taking up several measures including systemisation of the varsity process and various new IT initiatives. The university, which is facing the paucity of regular teaching staff, is planning to overcome this hurdle by going in for the direct recruitment of the vacancies. About 10 to 12 vacancies will be filled through recruitment.
Also, the varsity plans to hire senior retired professors of the BRAOU or from other universities to fill in the gap of faculty shortage. The authorities also have focused on improving the existing infrastructure and planning new facilities on the campus. “The university is going for the NAAC for the first time and works for the same have started as well. We will achieve the best grade from the NAAC,” BRAOU Vice-chancellor Prof K Seetharama Rao said.
The NAAC grading will help the higher education institutions to know their strengths, weakness and opportunities, besides the institutions can receive funds from the funding agencies based on their grade. According to the university authorities, only two open universities in the country-Indira Gandhi National Open University and Netaji Subhas Open University have received the NAAC grade, so far.
Established in 1982 through an act of the AP State Legislature, the BRAOU was the first open university in the country to offer various programmes through distance education. Presently, the university is offering BA, BSc and BCom courses at the undergraduate, 22 postgraduate, seven PG diplomas and four certificate programmes. All these courses are being offered for a nominal tuition fee. Students joining these courses will have 12 in-person theory and practical classes per semester besides providing high-quality audio-video content and text course material.
Apart from the distance education programmes, the university will soon launch its online courses. The Executive Council of the varsity has also approved the setting up of the Centre for Online Education and Learning. Initially, the university is planning to offer two or three credit courses online and they will be linked to the Swayam portal of the government of India. Any student can opt for these online courses.