Now students will appraise and evaluate their teachers! The Academic Performance Indicators (API) — a mandatory requirement for universities and colleges in India to select and promote faculty members—has been slightly changed by the University Grants Commission.
As per the new rule, students with 75 per cent or more attendance will be eligible to evaluate their teachers and will have the right to participate in the performance appraisal of their teachers.
UGC has also modified API to make teaching/learning the main criterion of performance appraisal, instead of research and co-curricular activities.
Previously, 55 per cent of the API grading under the research category was based on the number of research papers/publications, 20 per cent on research projects, 10 per cent on research guidance/undergraduate dissertations and 15 per cent on the training course and conferences/seminars. Now, a teacher can score high in the research category by focussing on any of the above elements.
Teachers’ unions have been protesting against API scores ever since their introduction in 2010. Their argument is that they are inflexible and the strict regimentation of a teacher’s work kills free and critical thinking. The new API criteria will be notified soon.