Higher Education – RUSA, NIRF, HEFA, etc.

All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2018-19


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : AISHE, Various terms mentioned

Mains level : Key highlights of the survey

  • Union HRD Ministry has released the All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2018-19.
  • AISHE 2018-19 findings are based on the responses from 962 universities, 38,179 colleges and 9,190 standalone institutions.

All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE)

  • To portray the status of higher education in the country, Ministry of HRD has endeavored to conduct an annual web-based All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) since 2010-11.
  • The survey covers all the Institutions in the country engaged in higher education.
  • Data is being collected on several parameters such as teachers, student enrolment, programmes, examination results, education finance, and infrastructure.
  • Indicators of educational development such as Institution Density, Gross Enrolment Ratio, Pupil-teacher ratio, Gender Parity Index, Per Student Expenditure will also be calculated from the data collected through AISHE.

Highlights of the survey

Fall in professional education pursuance

  • The government defines professional education as higher education programmes that are meant for students to acquire knowledge, skills, and competencies for a specific profession or a class of occupations.
  • Student’s enrolment in B.Tech and M.Tech programmes has seen a dramatic fall.
  • This has led to an overall dip in enrolment in professional courses, which has hit a four-year low.
  • Since the academic year 2015-16, the number of students pursuing professional courses at the undergraduate level has decreased by 7,21,506 (roughly 9%).
  • Enrolment in PG professional programmes dropped by almost 32%, from 18,07,646 in 2015-16 to 12,36,404 in 2018-19.

Fall in enrolment

  • The drastic dip comes at a time when student enrolment in higher education is at an all-time high.
  • According to the survey, total enrolment in higher education has been estimated to be 3.74 crore, as opposed to 3.66 crore the year before.
  • The waning popularity of professional degrees seems to have renewed interest in academics.

Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER)

  • GER is a statistical measure for determining the number of students enrolled in UG, PG and research-level studies within the country and expressed as a percentage of the population in the 18-23 years age group.
  • According to AISHE 2018-19, the present GER in higher education is 26.3%, up from 25.8% in 2017-18.

Gender Parity on rise

  • Gender Parity Index (GPI), the female: male ratio in higher education measures progress towards gender equity.
  • Out of the total 3.74 crore students in higher education in 2018-19, 1.92 crore are men, and 1.82 crore are women.
  • The GPI has increased over the last five years, from 0.92 in 2014-15 to 1 in 2018-19.

Humanities is more popular

  • The highest number of students are enrolled in Arts courses.
  • The total number of students enrolled in Arts courses are 93.49 lakh, of which 46.96% are male and 53.03% are female.
  • Science is the second major stream with 47.13 lakh students, of which 49% are male and 51% are female.
  • Commerce is the third major stream with 40.3 lakh students enrolled. The share of male students enrolled in Commerce is 51.2%, whereas female enrolment is 48.8%,” the survey states.
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