Assessment Report On
Institutional Accreditation Of
Christ College, Bangalore
1.1 The Peer Team constituted by NAAC to assess Christ College, Bangalore consisted of:
Dr. A. Sukumaran Nair - Chairman
Rev. Dr. Francis Soundararaj - Member
Shri V.R. Shirgurkar - Member
Dr. Latha Pillai - Deputy Adviser, NAAC
Shri Madhukar, B.S. - Assistant Adviser, NAAC
1.1.1 The terms of reference of the task assigned were:
a. to go on a visit to Christ College in order to ascertain and verify facts as they were presented in the self-study report through interaction with different sections of the college community, and to verify records; and
b. to assess and accredit the college’s programmes affiliated to Bangalore university within the framework of the ten parameters which serve as given benchmarks of quality.
1.1.2 The visit was made on the 15th and 16th of July, 1998. It was monitored by the officers of both the college and NAAC. The schedule prepared for the visit was closely followed and the agenda was fully covered. A copy of the schedule of the visit is enclosed as Appendix I.
1.2 Christ College
1.2.1 The Peer Team visited Christ College, Bangalore, a well-known seat of higher learning in Bangalore. It was established in 1968 and it is affiliated to Bangalore University. It was founded by the Christian religious congregation, the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI), which runs many educational institutions in India.
The CMI congregation cherishes the ideals of its founder, the blessed Kuriakose Elias Chevara, a well-known spiritual and social leader of the 19th century. He lived in Kerala and promoted education as the means of approaching God. Although the college was founded for the benefit of the minority community of Christians, it is secular in its service and it caters for the educational needs of all castes, creeds, religions and languages without discrimination. It enjoys an established popular accreditation for the style and competence of its functioning as an institution of higher learning.
1.2.2 Educational programmes: The college offers government aided and self-financing courses affiliated to Bangalore University at graduate and post-graduate levels. It also offers pre-university courses. Pre-university courses have the following combinations:
Arts - 1. History, Economics, Sociology, Political Science
Commerce - 2. History, Economics, Business Studies, Accountancy
3. Commerce, Accountancy, Business Mathematics,
Science - 4. Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Electronics
5. Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Biology
At the tertiary level the following degrees are offered:
A. Courses offered
B.A. History, Economics, Political Science,
Economics, Political Science, Sociology
Kannada, History, Political Science
Psychology, Sociology, Economics
Psychology, Sociology, English
Functional English, English, Psychology
Journalism, Psychology, English
B.Sc. Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics
Physics, Mathematics, Electronics
Chemistry, Botany, Zoology
Computer Science, Mathematics, Statistics
Bachelor of Commerce
Bachelor of Hotel Management (self-financing)
Bachelor of Business Management (self-financing)
Bachelor of Computer Science (self-financing)
Post Graduate Courses
Master of Computer Applications (self-financing) (M.C.A.)
Master of Business Administration (self-financing) (M.B.A.)
B. Other Courses
The college also offers some courses, under a twinning programme, affiliated with an overseas university. It also offers, on its own, many self-financing courses in computer science. These do not come under the terms of reference for assessment by NAAC.
1.2.3 Location and Campus: Christ College is located in the erstwhile outskirts of Bangalore in a beautiful campus. The premises are aesthetically designed and commodious. It rests on 15 acres of land in the relatively busier part of the town but the serenity of atmosphere in the lushy garden-bedecked landscape insulates the seat of learning from pollution, thus making it conducive to intellectual pursuits. Adequately equipped for the pursuit of scholarship, Christ College offers educational facility for 875 women and 1362 men students to study under the guidance of 156 teachers.
2.0 Process of Assessment
2.1 NAAC’s Process
NAAC’s process of assessment comprises three stages:
1. Preparation of a self-study report by the institution with the help of a steering committee, appointed by the college for the purpose, under the guidance of officers of NAAC;
2. Validation of the report by an in-house analysis and by the visit of the Peer Team to the institution, and
3. the final decision of NAAC based on the report of the Peer Team.
The report is concerned with the latter half of the second stage in the process, namely, the Peer Team Visit.
2.2. The Methodology of the Peer Team
The methodology adopted by the Peer Team is as follows:
Before the visit: The self-study report and supportive documents were carefully studied by the members severally. A detailed consolidated statement was prepared by tabulation which displays all details found in the documents referred to above alongside names of parameters, key aspects, criterion statements and probes or healthy practices. The tabular columns provide the following information.
Inform-ation from self-study report
The tables are enclosed as Appendix II. The perusal of details at a glance helped the team to prepare a list of documents to be called for from the college without much difficulty and also to arrive at a tentative grading of performance according to each parameter.
During the visit: The Peer Team was on a conducted visit to the college where the Managing Committee, administrators including the Principal and other functionaries, departments, faculty, students, non-teaching staff and others were individually/ collectively met. The interactions were free, informal, frank and fruitful. They helped the team to corroborate evidences, to have a first-hand knowledge of the nuances of the life and work of the college-community, and to fill up gaps of information as well as clarify doubts. At the beginning of the first day the Peer Team and the Chairman of NAAC, along with some of its officers, interacted with the Managing Committee. The Chairman emphasised the need to make a professional assessment of quality understood not as a product of comparison among attainments of similar institutions but as a mark of excellence at international levels of academic performance and achievement. The Chairman of the Peer Team stressed the need for operational definitions of goals which will help institutions to perceive clearly the direction of growth and development. At the end of each day the Peer Team met to compare notes taken down during the interactions. These notes were transferred to Data Recording Sheets (Form I) which are enclosed as Appendix IV. Further documents necessary for the team to peruse the next day were listed and given to the college. At the end of the second day the Peer Team had an exit meeting with the Steering Committee which prepared the self-study report. The Chairman, and the members of the Peer Team shared their appreciation of the superb performance of all the students whom the committee had met throughout the visit, the co-operation extended by the college to them, the team work efficiently organised and executed by dynamic leaders and other helpers and the impressive dimensions of life and work in the college. They highlighted a few points of concern but reserved their own comments on the processes and the final outcome of the exercise. They unanimously expressed their belief that the institution has much potential to reach peaks of excellence in the future in several aspects of its educational activity.
After the Visit: The tentative grades severally made by the members of the Peer Team earlier were reviewed, differences debated and a tentative consensus was arrived. The team was ready to gather all strands together to write the report parameter-wise.
3.1 Parameter I - Goals and objectives
3.1.1 The goals of the college are clearly stated in the handbook, Information brochure and academic calendar. The calendar provides for orientation to PU students which obviously includes an explanation of goals. As both the faculty and the students are aware of them it is clear that they were made known. They were publicised at the one-day staff meeting (vide Form I-Interview Data Sheet on Parameter I) held outside Bangalore and this had enabled departments to re-interpret them to suit their programmes (op.cit.). A document perused during the visit shows an attempt to interpret academic excellence in terms of (a) “a solid foundation of knowledge; (b) creative and critical thinking; and (c) communication skills” (“Christ College; Strategic Plan 1997-2000”, p.7).
The college’s re-interpretation of “Service” is realised in the offering of relevant courses (P.I.5) to suit market-placement needs in the urban area.. Academic excellence is said to be reflected in the excellent results at university examinations (P.I.5). There are several rank holders among successful students. Co-curricular excellence is reflected in winning trophies (P.I.5) at inter-collegiate cultural competitions. Response to international needs is understood to be made by means of the overseas twinning programme the college has recently created (P.I.6.iii) (SSR,p.18).
However there is little evidence of the goals having been “periodically reviewed and systematically communicated to its constituencies” (criterion statement No. 1). The programmes chosen are the outcome of community needs in a business - technological context rather than that of a conscious reinterpretation of the goals themselves. The goal of service, for example, has been translated into additional programmes, viz. MBA, MCA, etc., essentially for the benefit of an urban population. Nor are there courses in the curriculum corresponding to the re-definition of “academic excellence” mentioned above. The apparent revision of goals from the citation found in the Memorandum of Association to its present form is not explained. The exercise leading upto such a revision has not been made explicit. Obviously, therefore there has been no periodic and systematic review of the goals.
If the college has to be “alert and responsive to translating goals into action” (criterion statement 2) an ongoing monitoring mechanism may be created. There does not exist one which is representative and participatory. By such means a corporate exercise by the college community can be made. The outcome will help in the reinterpretation of goals and objectives according to changing student needs, thus preparing the way for curriculum review and redesigning. Goal-driven programmes, though not always antagonistic to market-driven strategies, are more durable and they will ensure academic integrity.
It may be better for the college to view academic excellence on a broader academic basis. The achievement of the goals of the college, within the framework of the affiliating system, would have been greater, and justifiably academic and pedagogic, if only a review of curricular goals have been more systematic and meaningful. A standing academic body with representation from different constituents of the college, may monitor a sustained ongoing review of goals and objectives. Feedback obtained from the milieu, the urban consumers, society and other diverse educational institutions and from a network of neighbourhood relationships may contribute to such a review. The help of educational experts may be sought to translate needs into programmes from time to time. The feasibility of such a translation may also be reviewed by consultation with expert bodies outside the college such as the UGC and other funding agencies. In addition to such a monitoring body, the quality assurance cell within the college may also address itself to fine-tuning and streamlining processes which enable them to lead to reflection, review and the re-interpretation of the college’s goals and objectives in response to the changing needs of learners.
3.1.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. The goals, viz., “Excellence and Service” are stated clearly. All the constituents of the college are aware of them.
2. An attempt has been made to re-interpret both goals.
.3 However, a deliberate ongoing review leading to a clear re-interpretation of goals in the context of student and societal needs has not been made. The mechanism, which alone can make this possible, does not exist.
4. Consequently the changes made are tentative and not integral to curriculum. They are market driven, may be so in an urban context, but the justification is not academic and pedagogic as well.
3.2 Parameter II - Curriculum Design and Review
3.2.1 “The programmes of teaching and learning are consistent with the goals and objectives of the college” (criterion statement 1). Academic excellence is claimed to be reflected in the introduction of additional courses B.B.M. and M.B.A. and in M.Sc. projects and seminars (SSR,p.20-21). Elsewhere it is understood to be realised in excellent results in university examinations (P.I.5). Such a re-designing of courses is said to be the outcome of the feedback from employers obtained through questionnaires and also from peers through group discussions, staff meetings and annual workshops (SSR, p.21). Evaluation sheets of students are shown as yet another means (SSR,p.22). The two criterion statements are thus shown to have been realised by such re-designing. This is corroborated by information obtained from the dialogue with the Managing Committee (Form I - Interview Data Record Sheet) on Parameter II.
The college has done well, however, to get the changes approved by the Boards of Studies concerned at the university. This needs to be commended because the institution has, by being an agent of change, extended the benefit of curricular modification to other institutions as well. While this may be considered as a strength, the absence of a corporate exercise to look at the curriculum as a whole and to transfer such benefits to other disciplines as well may be construed as a weakness.
The re-designing appears to be both fragmentary and fortuitous. Key aspect 2 “Initiation, review and re-designing” implies a more deliberate exercise by the academic community. It is true that in the present system the syllabus is given by the university and little freedom exists to alter it. Nevertheless supplementation and enrichment are possible, as it has been demonstrated by the college in some areas. Only the process of deliberation facilitated by a department or a staff council or a quality cell could have made the additional components more integral to relevant disciplines besides bringing the benefit to others within the college. Inter-disciplinary curricular possibilities are therefore, left unexplored.
The college will do well to match a well interpreted paradigm of goals, stated in concrete terms, with corresponding strategies such as courses, methods, collaborations, etc. These may be constantly reviewed, revised and updated with the help of consultants and curricular experts. Where constraints are inherent, as they are in an affiliating system for instance, attempts made to supplement or enrich curriculum with such strategies as are mentioned above will go a long way not only to surmount constraints but to exploit the resources available in the institution for gearing up the programmes of the college to suit the needs of both learners and teachers on the one hand and those of the consumers on the other.
It is imperative for the college to establish an ongoing review mechanism which is participatory in its functions and which represents the interests of its constituents.
A well planned workshop and a series of consultations may be held to orient the college community to the choice or fabrication of curricular models such as the traditional, UGC, autonomous college and community college models.
3.2.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. Efforts have been made to respond to the needs of the urban community by introducing suitable courses.
2. At least one corporate exercise seems to have been made to think about service in terms of introducing new/additional courses of study.
3. There is no representative internal mechanism to deliberate on, review and redesign curriculum and make it appropriately respond to the needs of the learner and the society.
4. The know-how necessary to attempt curricular re-structuration is yet to be acquired. Curricular models, internal weightages of components thereof and implementation are not found reflected even in the few supplementary/enriching programmes introduced by the college within the university curriculum.
5. The curriculum is more stereotyped than goal-determined and innovative. Translation of goals into programs therefore suffers considerably.
3.3 Parameter III - Teaching, Learning and Evaluation
3.3.1 The college is sensitive to the differences in the achievements of students. The presence of poor achievers is recognised and they are given additional help (SSR,p.24). Tutorials, the mentor system and informal counselling, among others, are some means whereby remedial help is offered. However an organised bridge course, systematically offered on the basis of a syllabus framed for the purpose, does not seem to exist. Students’ abilities are gauged through several methods (SSR,p.24) such as interviews, questionnaires, quiz, orientation and hobbies (SSR,p.24)
The teaching-learning process is successful within an affiliating frame of reference. Learners are coached for university examinations through terminal and preparatory examinations (SSR,p.25). Results are very good: many university ranks are obtained by the examinees.
Teaching remains conventional for the most part. The lecture method prevails. Non-conventional methods are used parallelly but not in the place of at least part of the lectures. These are role play, seminar, quiz, debates, discussions, etc., (SSR,p.27) and they are not alternatives to the conventional instructional methodology; they are not part of regular schedules of teaching. However educational aids such as OHP, transparencies, language lab, video cassettes, slides and charts are used (SSR,p.27). Learner-centred class-room activity is not evident. Computers are yet to be used to make teaching more effective. An orientation programme is offered to integrate theory and practice of laboratory subjects (SSR,p.29) but details of it were not available to the committee. Teaching work is monitored through a work diary ( SSR,p.24) which records the work completed by each teacher on daily basis. Unfortunately, however, it has been reportedly abandoned.
Faculty are appointed by a selection committee but reservation policies, if any, are not followed. Faculty performance is assessed by students with a questionnaire (SSR,p.25). The results are analysed and feedback given. Corrective measures, if any, are not clear. The Principal mentioned, during one of the meetings, instances of removal of erring teachers as a result of feedback. Institutional “evaluation of teaching, research and work satisfaction” (key aspect 9) is not yet practised. Faculty development through university orientation and refresher programmes and UGC research programmes (M.Phil., Ph.D., through FIP) are regularly taken advantage of. Teachers are given some financial support and free use of support services by the management (P.III.10).
The performance of faculty in some departments reveals high motivation and involvement but not so in others. The physics department has shown evidences of innovative programmes, research projects, and general academic advancement of both faculty and students (Form I). The Computer Science department has similar innovative programmes besides placement arrangements made for most of the students. The departments of Chemistry, Botany and Zoology are inadequately motivated to try out something beyond the conventional pursuit of curricular and terminal examinations. They have yet to make an attempt to make their courses more attractive by redesigning or enriching them. Electronics, Mathematics and Statistics show greater motivation than the former but they have yet to make their disciplines more challenging (Form I).
The departments of Psychology, Social Sciences including Journalism are satisfied with operating given programmes, with the conscience of duty, but they have not yet explored the possibility of forging inter-disciplinary linkages and offering consultancy services to the community. The department of Economics has made sporadic ventures to seek newer ways of assessment of student performance but an organised effort to revamp curriculum and pedagogy is not made evident, if it is present. The department of Sociology has achieved good results, as most other departments, in university examinations but an imaginatively creative interdepartmental linkage has not been seriously considered. The teaching of English remains unrealistically conventional within the college. The course on functional English is yet to be made practically effective through efficient linkages with the media industry. The teaching of spoken skills remains academic and may not be suitable for achieving the objectives of this course. The department of Languages is vibrant but downcast because of the unpatronising policy of the university regarding the teaching of the mother tongue and in general lack of cultural sensitivity of consumers of education. Kannada teachers have made a significant number of publications.
Evaluation of student performance remains conventional. It is terminal and summative and not continuous and formative. Hence most students seem to rely on notes and generally depend on tests of memory. The constraint caused by catering for the university requirement in the form of a final examination was shared by the faculty with the Peer Team (Form I) but a breakthrough is yet to be made. Even a minimal replacement of conventional methods of pedagogy and assessment with more effective strategies, made available through educational research, appears to be a burden to the teaching community. They feel secure within the affiliating system and its conventional practices.
Conventional teaching-learning processes may be changed. To begin with, 15% to 20% of lectures may be replaced by learner-centred inter-active classroom strategies. Operationalisation of such strategies alone is not adequate to generate and consolidate learner skills. They ought to be matched by appropriate assessment instruments. The seminar, for instance, ought to be used to build up in the learner the skills of scholarly reading, collection and organisation of data, choice of topic, preparation of a paper with proper documentation and skills of oral communication, defence, giving diplomatically negotiated answers as well as maintaining one’s own original idea besides skills of discrimination between weaknesses and strengths of one’s own position initially taken but modified in the light of subsequent interaction. And all these must be reflected in the assessment sheet which may thus be objectively used. Similarly for all methods which may be judiciously chosen according to need and practicability. Assessment of student performance need not be terminal and summative. It shall be continuous and formative. The teacher may have the autonomy to choose modes of assessment but the regularity of administering them by means of a centralised schedule may be ensured. Thirdly, departments and individual teachers may organise periodical workshops to review, revise or replace methods adopted, in the light of clearer perceptions emerging from empirical data.
The faculty may be encouraged by the college to avail themselves of the resources available to enhance their academic activity and also to do appropriate research work which helps teaching-learning processes in a teaching institution. Transparency in decision-making , chiefly in the choice of faculty for research grants, is recommended.
3.3.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. Teaching, learning and evaluation methods are geared to the system in vogue. This apart, university examination results are excellent.
2. New methods of teaching are initiated, though marginally and with some effect.
3. Teacher performance appraisal has been initiated with a student evaluation of it.
4. Weak performers are given some remedial help through tutorials.
5. Some new technology is used as teaching aids.
6. The Management supports teacher development by offering some assistance and near free use of infrastructure.
7. Learners are appreciative of the involvement of teachers in their life and work, and of their concern for and personal attention to them.
8. Teacher performance was monitored through the work diary.
9. Attendance is monitored through computerisation.
10. Parents are informed of the progress of their wards.
11. Quality performance of students is achieved through co-curricular programmes.
1. Unconventional and more effective teaching methods have not become the regular part of instructional practice. They have not replaced the lecture-notes method.
2. Seminar-centred classroom activities have not yet been adopted as regular pedagogy. They form a part of tutorial activities which are an assortment of diverse strategies.
3. Teacher performance appraisal on an institutional basis and a follow-up analysis and feedback together with corrective measures are not yet introduced. The assessment of teacher performance based on student evaluation alone is fragmentary, not holistic.
4. Organised bridge/remedial programmes preceded by diagnostic tests and followed by assessment of progress at terminal point have not been attempted.
5. Educational technology is not used to reinforce teaching.
6. Corporate academic activity at the department and the college levels to plan and achieve quality in teaching, learning and evaluation has not been tried out.
7. Faculty-motivation to achieve innovation, inter-disciplinary co-operation for generating new and relevant courses of study and to offer consultancy services is pretty low.
3.4.1 Parameter IV - Research and Publications
The college attempts “to promote and sustain research culture” (criterion statement 1). It provides infrastructure near-free of cost and sanctions study leave to members of faculty involved in research. Students are encouraged to acquire research culture through project work (SSR 34). The student projects in crystal growth in physics, those of clap switch, digital thermometer and moving message display in electronics are some examples (SSR p. 34). Teachers collaborate with outside agencies to pursue research (SSR,p.34). The departments of physics and computer science are instances in point (Form I). Some departments such as physics, mathematics and statistics and others have made use of UGC assistance to work on minor research projects (Form I). Some members of the teaching faculty have research degrees such as Ph.D. and M.Phil. The Department of Kannada has published 138 books besides articles in journals (SSR,p.34). There is a general impression that a teaching institution has little to do with research. Consequently research tends to be underplayed.
The college, does not have a mechanism (Probe 2) to ensure the promotion of research culture. There is no research or publication committee to promote and monitor research. Teachers generally complain against the pressure on them to do research because they seem to feel constrained by time and by the demand “to cover syllabus” and to “coach” students for the final examination. The possibility of developing research interests by publishing research papers, which do not require elaborate resources, has not been given the consideration it needs to be given. Encouraging students (many have creative talents’ and critical enquiry) to publish research papers with appropriate documentation, even in a campus journal, remains to be achieved.
The faculty feel that the management ought to be more generous in funding research. It ought to be a greater facilitator of research (Form I). The Management Council may be concerned about this legitimate need.
Faculty in many departments have not yet obtained research degrees. They may be encouraged to obtain them.
Research culture may be promoted by encouraging staff to publish papers. The Management may build into the system of organisation some degree of academic flexibility to encourage members of the teaching faculty take advantage of research opportunities. Students may be guided into critical scholarly inquiry and they may be initiated into research processes by orienting them to research methodology, especially, documentation. A less extensive campus research journal may be started with the help of a screening committee on which outstanding outside experts may sit and offer consultancy. Research proposals may be submitted by as many members of faculty as possible to different funding agencies. Research may also be directed towards “community development” (criterion statement 1).
3.4.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. Some research activity is evident in the efforts of faculty to acquire research degrees although this is not in proportion to the quantum of facilities available such as free use of infrastructure, availability of duty leave, etc.
2. Project work has helped students of a few departments by giving them some exposure to research methodology.
3. Publication by teachers/students in refereed journals were not available
4. Students, accomplished and communicative though they are, were not initiated to the processes of research
5. Publications do not match expected research levels as most of them are Pre-University or tertiary learning/teaching aids
3.5.1 Parameter V: Consultancy And Extension Activities
The college offers extension services (SSR,p.36). The NSS seems to be the only organised machinery to get them going. Arranging annual camps, provision of sanitary arrangements in villages, organising effective blood donation camps in order to supply considerable quantities of blood to hospitals, involvement in pulse polio and anti AIDS campaigns deserve mention (SSR,p.36). The community development programmes at Siddharta Colony (SSR,p.37), visits to Ashaniketan (home for the mentally retarded) and Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology (SSR,p.37) are other extension activities. Co-operation with the Rotary Club, APSA and other agencies has helped in the exposure of students to realities of the difficult existence of the underprivileged (SSR,p.37). The co-operative efforts of the department of Sociology and NSS (Form-I) to identify deserving communities for extension activity (SSR,p.37) is commendable. NSS has an enrolment of 160 and some volunteers are regular in their participation in the programmes. The annual camp at Hulugondanahally seems to have been quite successful in bringing students into close contact with rural India. The NCC has been involved in its programmatic activities. Its participation in community development is limited to tree planting.
The College believes that there is little scope to offer constancy services (SSR, p.36).
Faculty participation in extension and consultancy activities is minimal. Apart from 6 teachers who are officially involved in the NSS hardly any others seem to give sustained support to the community work done by it. Some departments have the potential to offer consultancy services, whereby the revenue of departments can be augmented for the sake of departmental development. Psychology can offer consultancy and testing services, computer science can offer many services to the private and public sectors. Journalism can offer consultancy, outside schedules, to students and amateurs who have chosen or wish to choose careers in the media. The Management Department can offer programmes for Managers. English can offer spoken English and other Secretarial programmes to both students and outsiders. These possibilities have been left unexamined and unexplored.
The college does not seem to have an organised mechanism to assess community needs and to sensitise the college community, especially the faculty, to the need to meet them, even though in a limited way. Nor is there an effort to make such involvement a process of academic and scholarly inquiry with a nexus to corresponding disciplines of study. Such a procedure can make curricula reflect the need for community orientation of intellectual inquiry in order to make the latter purposeful.
Informed and skilled as they are, the faculty of Christ College may consider the possibilities of offering consultancy to private and public sectors in order to generate resources for departmental development. The College’s response to community needs may be more organised and continuous and less sporadic or occasional.
The community college nexus and its relevance to the academic and service programmes of the college may be brought home to the members of the community through orientation and conscientizing programmes. It will be better if the student involvement in community and extension activity has an academic/professional dimension. The conduct of a survey and analysis of data on the basis of statistical and computational methods, development of software for the community’s benefits, etc., are instances which combine service with academic inquiry and practice. The incorporation of an extension component at least in the periphery of the curriculum and appropriate rewarding methods are desirable.
3.5.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. The NSS facilitates the college’s involvement in community welfare.
2. Community college collaboration for academic purposes is weak.
3. Offering of consultancy by departments which have the potential to offer them has not been considered. The college’s policy on offering consultancy is not clear.
4. Faculty participation in community and extension work is poor.
5. Curricular reform to accommodate college - community interaction, collaboration, and services within the components of the curriculum (marks may be awarded and entry made in college mark lists) is yet to be considered.
6. Choice of community-oriented courses for those interested in these has not been thought of.
3.6.1 Parameter VI: Organisation And Management
The college is managed by both centralised and decentralised styles of management, although the prevalence of the former is reportedly felt by some sections of the community. Preference for any one of them apart, it must be justly admitted that the evidence of efficient management is conspicuous. Freedom is enjoyed by faculty and students within a framework of operations. Heads of departments can order, or purchase books and consumables without going through bureaucratic procedures (SSR p.40). They are also free to distribute work according to the individuals’ preferences, prepare departmental time-tables, decide dates of assignments, etc. Faculty who wish to pursue research are free to use the infrastructure with no or marginal charges. New functionaries were created for augmenting efficiency of management. The career counselling and placement officer, the psychological counselling officer, the officer in-charge of the centre for education beyond curriculum, the NSS officers, the NCC officer are members of the faculty and they are among the important functionaries of this college. The Principal is in charge of the overall implementation of curriculum, conduct of examinations, monitoring attendance of students, faculty and staff and of interaction with the government bodies and the university (SSR p.40). Such a decentralisation is enabling and not authoritative.
There are eight science, seven social sciences, seven languages departments in the college. There is a separate department of commerce and management and also hotel management. Each department has a head of the department under whom all other teachers in the department work. Each department has a separate room for its teachers and the head.
The college functions within the frame of Rules and Regulations, Ordinances and Statutes of the Bangalore University. It also has to follow the rules made by the Government for the colleges in the state. The Principal appoints committees for academic and administrative functions. However there are no rules prepared by the college to define the powers given to such committees.
Some teachers felt that the administration is not participatory. Teachers in general are not aware of the policy of the college about admissions or faculty recruitment or granting of study leave to teachers (Form I). However, the Peer Team found that this has not affected the outcomes/results of the college. More transparency and participation of the teaching and non teaching staff in the process of decision making may augment their involvement leading to better results in wider areas.
The college has successfully implemented the scheme of making teachers’ assessment regular by systematically obtaining feedback from students. The extent of the coverage of all the faculty over a period of time is not clear. Corrective measures were some times taken if their performance was found unsatisfactory. Students have expressed their satisfaction about this process. The teachers also have taken it in the right perspective. Confidential reports of all employees are maintained by the college office.
The college has adopted a very useful computerised programme to administer the feed back received by the college office on the performance of students in various examinations on a day to day basis, their attendance at lectures and practicals and their participation in various activities organised by the college. It is being updated every day and the Principal has access to the information in his office. He too can monitor it with his own inputs. The college regularly posts students’ reports to their parents. This has promoted a sense of responsibility among students. This is commendable indeed.
The college has appointed additional staff as and when required. The management takes the burden of making payment to such staff from its own funds. Study leave is granted to teachers depending on the teacher fellowships granted by the UGC.
There is no teachers’ association in the college. Similarly, there is no Students’ Union in the college. However the students in general have accepted this position. They do not have any complaints on this point.
The college announces its academic calendar on time. It is given to students and all the departments. Adequate publicity is given to it.
The college’s management style could have been more participatory. The accommodation of faculty on committees, even on an advisory capacity, could have avoided some feelings of discontent among some sections of the teaching faculty. Students, whom the Peer Team has found competent, communicative and intellectually mature are not involved in decision making processes. Not that they complain against such an arrangement-in fact, they did not-but that the contribution they could have made to enrich life and programmes as well as their effective execution has been lost by lack of provision for such participation. Perhaps because of such a lacuna, faculty participation in the college programmes seems to have been determined by a sense of discharging appointed duty rather than vicarious involvement. Their duty confined only to teach the fixed syllabus, their non-participation or minimal participation in co-curricular programmes, especially community and extension work, or in academic innovations, or any supplementary and enriching programmes cannot be explained otherwise. It is expedient for the management to let faculty engage in common dialoging with the administration in order to better the rapport between them and the Management. Transparency in administration, especially in policies about admission, recruitment, selection for study privileges will be a great help.
3.6.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. The management has contributed to central and effective control of the organisation.
2. The sincerity of the faculty at work and the co-operation of the students have been won by the managers.
3. Additional functionaries have been appointed to administer expanding units.
4. Office functions have been automated with modern technology.
5. The non-teaching staff perform efficiently and loyally.
6. Teacher performance appraisal is made through student feedback.
7. Confidential/attendance and other records are maintained efficiently.
8. Student services are rendered expeditiously by the office staff.
9. The decision-making processes are not fully participatory. Faculty do not find a place on the advisory committee, for instance.
10. Students do not find a place in academic decision-making bodies.
11. Transparency in admission, recruitment, teacher privileges, etc is inadequate.
12. The performance appraisal of teachers is not holistic.
13. Projections of human power requirement, and consequent administrative streamlining have not been made on a long term forecast.
3.7.1 Parameter VII : Infrastructure Facilities
“The college has adequate physical facilities to run educational and administrative functions efficiently” (criterion statement 1). This is true of Christ College. It has adequate buildings and a separate library block. They stand on a huge campus covering an area of 85000 sq. m. (The area of the academic buildings is 15759 sq.m., that of the open space is 44172 sq.m. and that of the central library 1224 sq.m.) The gardens are spread on an area of 1760 sq.m. A separate supervisor and supportive staff are employed for landscaping and maintaining the garden (SSR p.45). The corporation has conferred the best maintained campus award to the college (P.VII.5). The lawns and gardens are maintained eco-friendly (P.VII.5). The cleanliness of the campus is quite good (P.VII.6). The general maintenance of the infrastructure is efficient. A qualified electrician is on the supporting staff. A carpentry unit takes care of repairs and general maintenance (P.VII.4). There is an electricity generator to take care of continuous supply of power (SSR,p.45). The auditorium, seminar halls, conference rooms, reading rooms, public conveniences are adequate. Extension of infrastructure to match growing needs is determined on the basis of feedback obtained from the members of the college community (P.VII.2). Dust bins are provided at convenient places to avoid indiscriminate littering of the campus (P.VII.6). The college has its own transport which is used by students for field visits. Uniformed security protect the campus. Nevertheless the involvement of the college community in the maintenance of the infrastructure does not seem to be appreciable. The Botany department, for instance, has not contributed much to the landscaping or maintenance of the flora. A matter of concern about the infrastructure is that it has not been put to optimal use. The use of the space, the equipment, the classrooms and the halls could have been optimised by running shifts, extra programmes and consultancies in a town where the demand for such as these cannot be but encouraging.
The college does not have a master-plan of the campus which projects the use of additional space and other types of extension projects for a period of time, say, the next 20 years.
The infrastructure may be optimally used. Additional infrastructure facilities may be created to augment research by providing separate carrels for researchers in the library, a video corner in the library, space for heads of departments to meet students and others who seek their guidance and advice and other such conveniences.
3.7.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. Excellent infrastructure well maintained.
2. Optimal use not ensured, especially off college working time.
3. The college lacks a master plan to optimise infrastructure over a plan period
3..8.1 Parameter VIII: Support Services
The college has adopted a policy to constantly update, modernise and optimise the facility. It has a good library, well equipped computer centre, laboratories in physics, chemistry, botany, zoology, electronics and psychology. They also have a language laboratory. Sports facilities are available. They have a well maintained all weather basket ball court , football and hockey fields. A workshop facility where repairs to furniture are attended to is also available. A welfare fund has been instituted for the benefit of the teaching and non-teaching staff of the college. Canteen facility is available on the campus. However, the college does not have its own hostels either for male or female students. Depending on the need for such a facility around 100 women are accommodated in five convents around the college (SSR,p.48-49).
It is found that the college has scope for organising the available facility in an innovative way according to the demands. Presently the facility is not being used optimally .
The beautiful premises of the campus impress visitors. The environment on the campus is green, colourful and eco-friendly.
Access to these support facilities is easy for students. Students use them extensively. They are benefitted.
The college has a separate block for UG library; a well furnished facility for 250 students is available in its reading hall. There are 43200 volumes and 252 journals in the library. Stock verification and lending facility have been computerised (SSR,p.47). There is a separate reference section and photocopying facilities are available. Commerce, business management and zoology departments have separate departmental libraries. Additional facilities have been provided to the PG students. A spacious, separate library along with a reading room is available for their use. The Peer Team was impressed with the library and other support facilities provided by the college. The team noticed a good number of students working in the reading rooms of the UG and PG libraries. During one of the interaction sessions with students, students did speak proudly about the college library facilities. An amount of Rs.4,00,000/- is spent annually by the college on its library.
The college does not have provision to offer health services. Faculty housing, guest house, additional facilities for researchers, grievance redressal mechanism, the press, women’s hostel and others have yet to form part of the support system.
3.8.2 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. Support services are adequate for the present programmes and purposes.
2. Automation of most administrative procedures is a welcome facility to both faculty and students.
3. Additional support services, especially to secure students health; and to meet residential needs, etc. do not exist.
4. Additional facilities for researchers to work and prepare papers for publication in the college do not exist.
5. A grievance redressal mechanism is necessary but it has not yet been provided.
3.9.1 Paramater IX: Student Feedback and Counselling
The college follows a process whereby feedback from students is collected to improve the performance of the faculty (SSR,p.51). Questionnaires are used for collecting information about teaching methods, curriculum, academic environment, infrastructure facilities, employment generation and student services (SSR p.51). The feedback is analysed by the college and corrective measures are initiated by the principal, wherever possible. The Peer Team has verified the process. The strategy adopted by the college was found to be very effective in initiating quality enhancing activities.
The college brings out its handbook every year on time. It has published many brochures giving adequate information about various programmes run by the college. These are found to be useful for students, parents, and employers. The calendar is prepared, published and circulated in time.
Financial aid, in the form of various scholarships from the government and the management, is given to students (SSR,p.51). Scholarships based on merit, economic status and caste are given by the Government. The management gives some merit scholarships, sports scholarships, so also for achievements in extra-curricular activities. Special aid is given to students from rural areas (SSR,p.51). Four department awards are also given to students (SSR,p.52). Details of endowment scholarships are given in the college handbook (p.53). Information about percentage of students who obtain such scholarships could not be obtained by the Peer Team.
The college has appointed a professionally qualified counsellor to help students who have personal problems. There is a separate employment cell in the college which conducts tests, work interviews and group discussions (SSR,p.52). The college brings out necessary promotional material for the information of employers. Students curriculum vitae and photographs are made available to them. The Peer Team found this material to be very useful. Students benefit from this facility.
3.9.2 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. The college has initiated a helpful process of teacher performance appraisal through student feedback. The results are analysed and given back to teachers.
2. The annual calendar of events is given at the beginning of the academic year to both faculty and students.
3. Progress reports, attendance status, etc. are conveyed to parents and guardians.
4. The Principal monitors attendance and other records effectively through computer facility.
5. The placement centre has succeeded considerably in keeping employers appraised of the placement potential of students.
6. Psychological counselling offered by the professional counsellor has helped in solving many student personal problems.
7. Academic counselling, aptitude testing and other facilities are not made centrally available to students.
8. An ongoing mechanism for obtaining and analysing feedback from students on academic, placement, and other concerns has not yet been created.
9. The alumni association, which ought to play a considerable role in student affairs, remains deplorably dormant.
3.10.1 Parameter X: Generation and Management of Funds
The college generates resources through government reimbursements, UGC grants and fees collected from students. Self financing courses contribute substantially. Expenditure on various recurring and the non recurring items and also on the building construction programmes of the college is made from resources generated in this manner.
Copies of the audited statements of accounts were made available to the committee.
The alumni association does not play any role in raising financial resources for the college. Consultancy services are not given by the college. As such no resources are generated through this source.
The fee structure adopted by the college is revised from time to time.
The central office of the college places orders for various items required by all the departments functioning in the college. The heads of the departments submit their requirements to the Principal in writing as and when they need them. The Principal then takes the decision to sanction a certain amount and accordingly orders are placed and goods purchased.
The accounts department informed the committee that the bills were processed in time and ordinarily there was no delay in effecting the payment. However the committee could not verify this from the college records..
The college receives grant from the Govt. Of Karnataka. The same is utilised subject to the rules thereof.
The college receives grants from the UGC. Pay and other bills are prepared in time and disbursals made regularly.
Augmentation of resources as well as their generation may be given serious thought. Departmental and central developmental programmes require increased material resources when the academic and other programmes expand. Generation of resources through consultancy and other means may be taken up with the consultation of the constituents of the college/community and the neighbourhood.
The college may utilize funds granted by educational agencies and industry as well as philanthrophic associations. Suitable proposals may be prepared for the purpose.
3.10.3 Strengths and Weaknesses
1. In the circumstances of financial constraints, the college has done well to raise resources through offering self-financing courses.
2. Such resources are seen to be recycled to offer additional academic infrastructural and support facilities to the whole community.
3. Financial administration needs greater transparency.
4. Involvement of industry and other institutions through the college’s consultancy programmes has not yet been promoted.
5. Departmental and central budgeting practices have not yet been initiated.
4.0 Overall Analysis
4.1.0 General Analysis
The college is quite sound in providing infra-structure facilities and support services. The beautiful campus and its commendable maintenance; the adequacy of support services for existing programmes; automation of administrative transactions and services; and the centralised management which has ensured overall control -- all these provide the sound foundation to raise the academic edifice upon. The healthy exchange of ideas among students of both sexes; their participation in many co-curricular activities; and the mutual harmony between the teacher and the taught are pliant material with which such an edifice can be raised.
The strengths mentioned above have obviously made a visible impact upon the learners on the campus. They are well-informed, confident, communicative, mature, responsible and transparent. Their optimum utilisation of the facilities available on the campus and also of the coaching given by their teachers has resulted in outstanding achievements in the university examinations. Such of those departments and individual members of the faculty which and who have taken advantage of the physical facilities and conducive atmosphere on the campus have shown greater involvement in the programmes of the college than others. Perhaps because of these Christ College has won a high degree of social accreditation.
4.2.0 General Weaknesses
The academic edifice of the college is flawed. Neither the direction in which the academic programme is driven nor its relevance to modern higher education is wholly clear. Classical courses in humanities and sciences left unmodified by supplementation and enrichment by the college’s own initiative, conventional methods of teaching, learning and student work assessment and drifting with the university’s curricula do not ensure quality and competence in the general output of the college in terms of human resources and community programmes both of which directly stem from the goals of the college, viz. excellence and service. The potential of the faculty remains unexploited to the maximum advantage of the students and of the neighbourhood community. Motivation of the faculty issuing in initiative and innovation is yet to be realized. Administration and management is efficient but less participatory and transparent than is required for triggering motivation and involvement among the faculty. The general absence of mechanisms for an ongoing re-interpretation feedback on the totality of the life and work of the college, for periodical overhauling of academic curricula and for other functions of the college has led to only a few to be in the vanguard of progress. Others have been left as stragglers. It is inferred, therefore, that the education that results from the flawed academic edifice may not match the technical, national and global standards which prevail in the competitive educational scenario of today. The college may justifiably be rated as good as a similar college with similar facilities but whether it towers to a peak of excellence on a plateau of similar colleges is not quite certain.
As a result the quality of the college’s academic programmes as well as research interests have been affected. Re-calcitrance among some members of the faculty, underutilisation of student and faculty potential, absence of networking with the neighbourhood for effective academic and professional co-operation, lack of academic dimension in the college’s community programmes and the absence of a planned prospect for the future over a period of time may be traced to the inadequacies listed above.
4.3.0 Expected Responses and Non-fulfilment
The foregoing brief analysis of the strengths and the weaknesses of the college makes it clear that it needs to do more to fulfil the expectations described in the criterion statements of NAAC.
“Goals have not been periodically reviewed and systematically communicated” (I.1)
“Feedback from academic peers and employers is (neither systematically obtained nor) used in the initiation, review and redesigning programmes” (II.2)
“Bridge/remedial programmes” are not systematically organized” (III.2). The discrimination between outstanding achievers and poor achievers among learners has not been systematically made in order to discern the need for tailoring “Unconventional teaching-learning processes” (III.3) tried out by the college are in the periphery of the pedagogic arrangement . They are not its centre. Evaluation of student work remains by and large terminal and summative, not continuous and formative.
There is no mechanism to ensure promotion of research culture (IV.2). Research publications of students and faculty (IV.3) in refereed journals are not available, perhaps they are non-existent. There is “no machinery to scrutinise” and approve papers for publication (IV.5). Raising resources for development does not seem to be among the greater concerns of the college. Staff potential to offer consultancy remains unexploited (X. a)
This check list shows that the college is particularly weak in parameters III and IV. And these are vital to quality promotion in higher education.
4. 4. 0 Expected responses and fulfilment
“The goals and objectives of the college are clearly stated” (I.1). The college community is aware of them.
Some academic programmes are “consistent with the goals and objectives of the college.” (II.1)
“Regularity, confidentiality, rigour and fairness of evaluation (university examinations) procedures” are practised. (III.1). Students present seminars (III.4).
“The college is responsive to community needs” (V . 1) and some courses have been introduced into the curriculum.
The college has provided a “flow chart of Management Structure” (VI.1) and the hierarchy ensures overall control. Technology is used in administrative procedures (VI.18).
“The college has adequate physical facilities to run educational and administrative functions efficiently” (VII.1).
“The growth of infrastructure keeps pace with academic growth” (VII.2). “The college has effective maintenance arrangements” (VII.3).
“The college has sufficient and well-run support facilities and services to ensure the physical, intellectual health of all its constituencies.” (VIII.1). “The college has adequate library and computer facilities to which all have easy access” (VIII.2). “The college has welfare schemes” (VIII.3).
“The college has an effective mechanism to use student feedback” (IX.1) to assess faculty performance. “The hand book gives students clear guidelines about admission, completion requirements for all programmes, fee structure and refund policy, financial aid and student support services” (IX.3)
This check-list shows that the college is particularly strong in parameters VII to IX. These are essential for promoting quality in the academic programmes of the college.
5 . 0 Accreditation
In the light of the analysis of the strengths and the weaknesses of the college as gauged by the parameters of NAAC the Peer Team has unanimously accredited it with the following rating:
Parameter Label Score in percentage
I Institutional Goals and 55
II Curriculum Design and 65
III Teaching, Learning and 65
IV Research and Publications 45
V Consultancy and Extension 50
VI Organisation and Manage- 65
VII Infrastructure facilities 90
VIII Support Services 80
IX Student Feedback and 80
X Generation and Management 80
of Financial Resources
OVERALL SCORE 67.5
6 . 0 Suggestions
6.1.0 Please refer to detailed suggestions given under the parameters.
6.2.0 Other General Guidelines
6.2.1 Top-down management may be replaced by bottom-up management. Needs may be assessed at level of students and the faculty, in that order, as a preliminary planning exercise. The re-designing of curricula and the determination of pedagogic methods may rest upon such a nuclear exercise around which all activities may be set. The goals and objectives of the institution shall be in focus through the exercise.
6. 2. 2 Orientation programmes, workshops and consultations may be organised periodically in order to let the college community try out effective curricular reform.
6. 2. 3 The style of administration may be made more formal especially supported by well documented records. Many claims made in the self-study do not have supporting documents. It is expedient to maintain records of minutes of meetings, resolutions, circulars, notices, programme schedules, vital correspondence, etc.
7. 0 A college, well-maintained and ably administered, like that of Christ of Bangalore, can and will become the nursery of many a genius in varied fields of intellectual inquiry, if only the potential available within its community is stretched to the maximum. With the social accreditation already won in large measure, such a goal is within reach when the strengths are reinforced and the weaknesses eliminated.