Best Practices

1. Practice Title: Reform in seating arrangement system during examinations.

Goal:

Enhancing the efficiency of the examination seating arrangement process for administrative staff and providing students with a more convenient experience.

Context:

As a critical element of our evaluation system, our institution conducts various examinations annually for both internal assessment and those mandated by the university in both terms. We have approximately 350 students participating in these exams, and our college relies on a limited administrative staff (consisting of one clerk and two peons) to facilitate the examination process. Each day, we need to organize approximately 6 to 7 exam blocks, both in the morning and afternoon sessions. Traditionally, our administrative staff had to manually write students’ exam seat numbers on all benches in all classrooms, twice daily, throughout the nearly three-month examination period. This process consumed 1 to 2 hours every day, leading to a significant strain on resources. Moreover, students had to assemble daily to check the seating arrangement on notice boards, which occasionally led to stress and human errors. Consequently, it became imperative to introduce a more efficient mechanism for this system.

The Practice:

Rather than manually inscribing seat numbers on benches, we adopted a new strategy. We decided to number the benches based on classroom and then allocate seat numbers accordingly. As a pilot project, we selected two classrooms and four exam blocks for this experiment. Each bench was assigned a desk number, such as D1, D2, D3, and so forth, in Exam Block No. 1. Seat numbers were then allocated to these benches, and the seating arrangement was displayed on the door of each exam block. Since bench numbers were already available as a soft copy and had been printed; only seat number allocation was necessary on a daily basis. This approach was remarkably successful, garnering positive feedback from both staff and students. As a result, we decided to implement this method for all university and internal examinations, making it our current best practice.

Evidence of success:

This innovative practice has yielded substantial time, energy, and stationery savings for our institution, reducing our reliance on chalks and papers. A single administrative staff member can now complete seating arrangements for an entire week in just half an hour. Furthermore, students are now aware of their examination hall and bench assignments in advance, significantly reducing stress and confusion. Most importantly, this streamlined process has virtually eliminated errors, ensuring a smoother and more reliable examination experience for all stakeholders.

2. Practice Title: Admission Facilitation Process

Goal:

  • Strategically meet and surpass institutional enrollment and retention goals.
  • Ensure equitable access to higher education for students from rural, hilly, and diverse backgrounds.

The Context:

  • The Science programs (B.Sc.) face low enrollment due to high demand for professional courses.
  • Attracting and retaining students in science programs, especially B.Sc., B.Sc. (IT), and B.Sc. (CS), M.Sc (Organic Chemistry), M.Sc. (IT), is challenging due to nearby competitive institutions. Timely initiation of the admission process is crucial to retain bright students.

The Practice:

  • Admission process begins by showcasing college achievements through banners displayed in nearby villages and towns.
  • Admission committee members visit local villages, counsel 12th-grade students about the college’s facilities, qualified staff, infrastructure, helpful non-teaching staff, sports ground, hostel facility and more.
  • Members of committee utilize phone communication for further counseling.
  • Members encourage current S.Y.B.Sc., T.Y.B.Sc. and M.Sc.-II students to promote the college in their respective villages.
  • Distribution of admission application forms for F.Y.B.Sc., F.Y.B.Sc. (IT & CS) begins immediately after Maharashtra State Board’s H.Sc. results announcement. And admission application forms for M.Sc.-I begins immediately after T.Y.B.Sc. results. 
  • The Indoor Committee offers counseling for S.Y.B.Sc., T.Y.B.Sc. and M.Sc.-II students, helping them choose subjects based on aptitude and interest.

Information for the public and prospective students: 

  • Display seat matrix and category-specific quotas per government norms.
  • Publish cutoff dates for application submission, first list of selected students, last admission date for first-list students, and subsequent list announcements. 
  • Share fee structures for various courses and student categories. 
  • Guide special category applicants (e.g., Sports, Physically Handicapped) to submit necessary documents to the Principal or Sports Director. 
  • Employ data entry operators to input applicant details into a computer database, including student name, application number, marks, previous institution, category, parental income, etc. 
  • Generate consolidated lists of applicants by merit and category after the application deadline.

Effect of Covid-19 on the admission process:

  • The pandemic impacted admissions in the academic year 2020-21 and 2021-22.
  • To boost first-year admissions, committee members obtained a list of H.Sc. passed students from nearby junior colleges, including contact details.
  • Multiple phone contacts were made for counseling and online admission form completion.
  • Continuous telephonic support was provided to students who filled out forms but didn’t come for admission.
  • Economic hardships due to the pandemic led to some students not enrolling in higher classes; committee members counseled and convinced them to enroll.

Evidence of Success:

  • A consistent increase in student enrollment.

Problems Encountered and Resources Required:

  • Transportation challenges for students living far from the hilly area.

Overall, the Admission Facilitation Process has proven successful in achieving its objectives, despite some challenges and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

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