The Union government has made doctoral degrees mandatory for direct recruitment of assistant professors in all universities from July 2021.
The existing University Grants Commission rules allow universities to hire postgraduates who have cleared the National Eligibility Test (NET).
The government has not changed the recruitment criteria for colleges at the entry level of the lecturer. They may, for this post, either hire PhDs or postgraduates who have cleared the NET. However, for a college lecturer to apply for the next higher position, of assistant professor, a PhD degree will be necessary from July 2021.
The country has 864 universities, 40,026 colleges and 11,669 standalone institutions of higher education.
Prakash Javadekar, Union minister for human resource development, Indians with a PhD degree from the top 500 world universities, as measured by Quacquarelli Symonds, Times Higher Education or the Academic Ranking of World Universities, would also be eligible for direct recruitment at universities. They would no longer require an equivalence certificate from the Association of Indian Universities.
A new policy is also coming on college promotion. The government is replacing the existing Academic Performance Indicator with a new assessment system, expected to be notified by next week.
Under the new method, the government is removing the clause of mandatory research for promotion. Teachers can compensate for research work by undertaking activities such as mentoring of students, giving lectures on Swayam, the government online education portal, participating in extra-curricular activities, community work or adoption of villages. Their promotion assessment would be based on teacher-learning outcomes.
"Promotion criteria for university teachers has been made more research oriented; in colleges, it is more focused on teaching. College teachers would not be forced to undertake research," the minister said.
Also under the new policy, college teachers would be allowed promotion up to the rank of fulltime professors. Currently, their promotion is restricted to associate professor.
The government is also making it mandatory for recruits in both colleges and universities to undergo a month's induction programme before they begin teaching.