Students who perform well initially at their engineering colleges may soon be offered an automatic opportunity by the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) to complete their undergraduate engineering programme at one of the prestigious institutes and also earn a the coveted Ph.D from the IITs.
The panel that had been set up by the Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry under former energy commission chairman Anil Kakodkar to create reforms for IITs came up with this suggestion to allow the IITs to pick 2500 brilliant third year students at other engineering colleges and allow them an opportunity to study at the institutes.
According to the blueprint of the proposal, the students will be allowed to complete their B.Tech at the IITs and then also pursue a Ph.D. at the prestigious engineering institutes. The proposal was put forth by the Kakodkar committee as one of the key components of the strategy to increase the number of PhDs from the IITs.
A member of the panel said that the proposal, if implemented, would create a win-win situation as the selected students will be able to pursue a dream education at the IITs and the institutes will get students ready to take up research studies.
The report was presented before HRD Minister Kapil Sibal last week. Several faculty members at the IITs have expressed their disapproval about the implementation of the proposal. A senior professor from IIT Kanpur who had been involved with the setting up of the new IIT in Rajasthan said that he wasn't sure if the IITs could absorb the additional students.
He further added that the burden of work on the faculty at the IITs as well as the infrastructure is already quite high.
The panel has also suggested the HRD ministry to increase the annual fee for the institutes from Rs.50,000 a year toRs.2-2.5 lakh per year. The IITs had already increased their intake of doctoral students and had also increased their output of PhDs to around 1000 every year.