Andhra University, one of the oldest and top-five ranked universities in India, is now plagued by a shortage of faculty. Even after the retirement of so many faculty members every year, no new replacements are being done, due to which vacant posts are on the rise making it difficult for the department to run by one or two permanent faculty members.
In some areas, however, not everyone can understand how bad the situation is. The lack of faculty is having a severe impact on teaching. There should be a total of 936 professors, assistants and associate professors in about 74 departments in Andhra University. However, there were only 269 faculty members. 667 posts are vacant. This means that the university is staffed by only one-third of the staff.
The same situation in all departments
While there should be one professor, two associates and 13 assistant professors in the Department of History and Archeology under the College of Arts and Commerce, there is currently no regular faculty. A total of 16 posts need to be replaced.
There are two vacancies in Linguistics and 13 vacancies in Philosophy. While nine people are required to work in the Library and Information Science department, only one is performing the duties. There are also six vacancies for eight posts in the Physical Education section, 11 for 12 posts in the Sanskrit section, 11 for 13 posts in the Telugu section, 6 for 7 posts in the Yoga section and 26 posts for 28 posts in the School of Distance Education section. Similarly, if there are a total of 19 posts in Dr. BR Ambedkar Law College, 14 are vacant.
There are 19 vacancies for 29 posts in the College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, 20 for 25 posts in the Department of Botany in the College of Science and Technology, 21 posts for 25 posts in the Department of Geology and 15 posts for 18 posts in the Department of Metallurgy and Oceanography. In addition, there are 241 vacancies for a total of 301 posts in eight departments under the College of Sciences and Technology. Similarly, there are 117 vacancies for 246 posts in 15 departments under the College of Engineering. While seven Assistant Professor posts have been sanctioned for eight departments under the Women’s Engineering College, seven are currently vacant.
Dependent on Guest and contact faculty
Due to the shortage of faculty, Andhra University largely depending on 200 guest faculty members and 100 faculty members who are on a contractual basis. However, the lack of permanent faculty is having a serious impact on teaching as well as research. Students who are ambitious to get a seat in the university are shaking their heads at the situation after joining here.
Impact on University’s ranking
Not only this, the shortage of teaching staff at the university is likely to have an impact on the ranks given by national and international institutions. Permanent teaching staff must be commensurate with the number of students, especially for NIRF rank and UGC recognition. At least 60 percent of the staff must be working at the university. A drop of 50 percent would have a serious impact on the university rankings. Many experts say that considering the current teaching staff at the university, it is likely to fall to the bottom of the ranks nationally and internationally. Experts say the shortage of faculty will have an impact on future university progress.
Delay with court cases
Speaking to Hello Vizag, Professor V. Krishnamohan, AU Registrar said that “It is a fact that there is a permanent shortage of teaching staff in the university. However, in 2017-18, notification was issued to fill the vacancies and APPSC also conducted an examination to fill 380 posts. The whole process came to a standstill after some people went to court after the results were released and the merit list was put up. There are a total of up to 70 cases, including all universities across the state. The government will take steps to bring all these under one roof and complete the investigation. Depending on the verdict, if comes in another month, the government is likely to expedite the recruitment process.
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