Outlook’s annual ranking of India’s best professional colleges (in partnership with Drshti Strategic Research Services) can help students make an informed choice on the line of education across 12 streams. The process of ranking the country’s best professional colleges began by an extensive listing of institutes, writing to and contacting the directors of institutes who participated over the past years. This year, in an attempt to encourage new entrants across all the streams and ensure continued response from patrons, we conducted a rigorous follow-up through emails, multiple phone calls and field visits to maximise participation. As is the norm, for most streams, we considered colleges with government accreditation or affiliation, and with at least three batches that had graduated.
Detailed objective questionnaires were then sent to more than 2,700 colleges across the country in 12 streams: Engineering, Medicine, Architecture, Dentistry, Law, Social Work, Hotel Management, Fashion, Mass Communication, Design, Computer Applications, and Pharmacy.
The objective questionnaires measured colleges on five key parameters (selection process & institute profile, academics, personality and development, placements, employment & graduating outcome, and infrastructure), the weights of which were kept constant to ensure comparability with the previous year’s rankings. A separate perceptual survey was conducted among students, faculty, HR professionals, recruiters, practising doctors, dentists, social activists, fashion designers, media professionals, engineers, lawyers, hotel managers and architects in 17 cities: Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Calcutta, Allahabad, Indore, Bhopal, Kochi, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Lucknow, Coimbatore, Patna and Bhubaneswar.
This year, we received participation from as many as 428 institutes across streams, of which a gratifying 196 were engineering institutes. We had a total of over 20,000 questionnaire-based interviews among senior faculty members, students, recruiters and professionals as part of the perceptual survey, which is a 156 per cent increase as compared to last year’s number of respondents. The increase in the number of respondents for the perceptual survey happened, as each institute was asked to encourage its faculty, students, alumni and recruiters to fill the perceptual survey online, while follow-up calls were done to achieve maximum participation. In the final phase, an extensive audit was conducted in more than 165 colleges on visits to 15 cities.
With a gap between the number of professional graduates and the number of jobs, it’s imperative to make the correct choice of both college and course. Outlook’s professional colleges ranking hopes to lend a helping hand to aspiring minds. As always, choose wisely.
(The Drshti research team included A.K. Balaji Prasad, Jignesh Bafna and Akansha Chawla.)