On the back of a marginal three per cent rise in total enrolment, India's gross enrolment ratio (GER) improved to 27.1 per cent in 2019-20 as against 26.3 per cent in 2018-19 for the 18-23 years of age group.
According to the latest All India Higher Education Survey (AISHE) 2019-20 released by the Ministry of Education, while total enrolment and GER improved on a year-on-year (YoY) basis, the pupil teacher ratio (PTR) in universities and colleges fell from 29 in 2018-19 to 28 in 2019-20 if regular mode enrolment was considered.
Commenting on the 10th AISHE report, union minister of education Ramesh Pokhriyal noted that in the last five years the number of institutions of national importance grew by 80 per cent from 75 in 2015 to 135 2020. In the same period, student enrolment rose by 11.4 per cent along with 18.2 per cent growth in female enrolment, he further noted.
Total enrolment in higher education in 2019-20 stood at 38.5 million with 19.6 million male and 18.9 million female students, with the latter constituting 49 per cent of the total enrolment as against 37.4 million total enrolment of which 19.2 million were male and 18.2 million female at 48.6 per cent in 2018-19. Out of these, nearly 85 per cent of the students were enrolled in the six major disciplines such as Humanities, Science, Commerce, Engineering & Technology, Medical Science and IT & Computer.
Total number of teachers in 2019-20 were 1.5 million, up from 1.41 million in 2018-19, of which about 57.5 per cent were male teachers and 42.5 per cent are female teachers, as against 57.8 per cent and 42.2 per cent in the previous year.
Number of foreign students enrolled in higher education in India increased by four per cent in 2019-20 to 49,348, up from 47,427 in 2018-19. The foreign students come from 168 different countries from across the globe, with the top 10 countries constituting 63.9 per cent of the total foreign students enrolled.
Highest share of foreign students in India come from the neighboring countries of which Nepal is 28.1 per cent of the total, followed by Afghanistan 9.1 per cent, Bangladesh 4.6 per cent, Bhutan constitutes 3.8 per cent and Sudan 3.6 per cent.
In terms of programs, about 79.5 per cent of the students are enrolled in Undergraduate level programme while 2,02,550 students are enrolled in Ph.D. forming a mere 0.5 per cent of total student enrolment. Maximum numbers of students are enrolled in B.A. programme followed by B.Sc. and B.Com. programmes, with top 10 programmes out of approximately 196 covering 79 per cent of total students enrolment in higher education.
At Undergraduate level, the highest number of students at 32.7 per cent are enrolled in Arts/Humanities/Social Sciences courses followed by Science (16 per cent), Commerce (14.9) and Engineering and Technology (12.6). Whereas, at Ph.D. level, maximum number of students are enrolled in Engineering and Technology stream followed by Science.
On the other hand at Post Graduate level maximum students are enrolled in the Social Science stream and Science comes at number two.
In Indian higher education, around 38,986 students were awarded Ph.D. level degrees during 2019 with 21,577 male and 17,409 female, down from 40,813 students during 2018 with 23,765 males and 17,048 females.
According to the report, there are 1043 universities, 42343 colleges and 11779 stand alone institutions listed on AISHE web portal, of which 1019 universities, 39955 colleges and 9599 stand-alone institutions responded to the survey for 2019-20.
Meanwhile, the top eight states in terms of highest number of colleges in India in 2019-20 were Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat.