Mumbai: Maharashtra has surged ahead to become the leader in the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) evaluation process across the nation. The latest data released by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council reveals that an impressive total of 1,957 higher education institutions, comprising 35 universities and 1,922 colleges within the state, have successfully completed the rigorous NAAC assessment.
For the very first time, Maharashtra has secured the top position in the NAAC assessment procedure, a significant milestone in the realm of higher education. The NAAC evaluation and re-evaluation have become obligatory measures for universities, colleges, and higher education institutions striving to provide quality education. The categorization achieved through the NAAC assessment offers a transparent insight into an institution's ranking. However, navigating the intricate and time-consuming NAAC assessment process has led several institutions in the state to initially disregard its importance.
Aligning with the directives of the National Education Policy 2020, pivotal amendments are being introduced to the evaluation framework for higher education institutions. Until the new methodology takes effect, adherence to the NAAC assessment process remains mandatory. The Department of Higher Education has exhibited consistent dedication to ensuring compliance among colleges and universities within the state for conducting NAAC assessments.
The NAAC website's May 2023 data prominently showcases Maharashtra's prowess, boasting an unparalleled count of 1,957 higher education institutions successfully evaluated by NAAC. This surpasses the record of Karnataka, with 1,028 higher education institutes, ranking second under Maharashtra in the NAAC assessment. Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu has concluded the NAAC evaluation process for 904 higher education institutions. Despite Maharashtra being home to a substantial number of colleges, the state initially faced setbacks in NAAC assessment due to the reluctance of colleges to partake. However, the landscape has undergone a remarkable transformation, propelling Maharashtra to a distinguished position in the national NAAC assessment landscape.
Undoubtedly, the right to quality education is intrinsic to every student. Consequently, it becomes imperative for colleges and universities to engage in NAAC evaluation and re-evaluation. This commitment has been persistently underscored by the Directorate of Higher Education, catalyzing proactive measures. Directives were issued to universities, necessitating the cessation of first-year admissions for colleges that shunned NAAC assessment and re-evaluation. Additionally, affiliations were suspended for non-compliant colleges, all in alignment with relevant provisions.
A noteworthy surge in the number of colleges participating in NAAC evaluation and re-evaluation has propelled Maharashtra to the forefront of NAAC assessment. This achievement has garnered nationwide attention, with other states now looking to Maharashtra for inspiration. Dr Shailendra Deolankar, Director of Higher Education, Maharashtra, stated that this accomplishment has sparked a ripple effect at the national level, igniting interest and emulation from other states.
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