Contents background and Summary of Discussions in Fifth Dean’s Committee meetings New Initiatives

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  1. Background and Summary of Discussions in Fifth Dean’s Committee meetings

  2. New Initiatives

  3. Student READY

  4. Common Courses

  5. Examination and Evaluation System

  6. Term of Reference 3- Central Assistance for Strenghthening of Higher Agricultural Education

  7. Term of Reference 4- Guidelines for Assesing Training needs and Performance of Teaching Faculties

  8. Term of Reference 5- Reforms in Governance of SAUs

  9. Discipline wise reports w.r.t. Terms of Reference 1, 2 & 6

  1. Agriculture

  2. Agriculture Engineering

  3. Biotechnology

  4. Dairy Technology

  5. Fisheries

  6. Food Technology

  7. Forestry

  8. Home Science (Community Science)

  9. Horticulture

  10. Sericulture


The Indian Council of Agricultural Research vide Office Order No. F.No.Edn.5/1/2013-EQR dated July 10, 2013 constituted the Fifth Deans’ Committee on Higher Agricultural Education in India under the chairmanship of Prof. R B Singh with the following Terms of Reference:

  1. Defining UG & PG degrees for general market needs and for specialist jobs and uniformity in UG and PG degree nomenclature

  2. Restructuring of UG programmes for increased practical and practice contents.

  3. Central assistance for strengthening of higher agricultural Education

  4. Guidelines for assessing training needs and performance of teaching faculties.

  5. Reforms in governance of SAUs

  6. Developing a Model DPR for establishment of a college

Summary of discussions in Fifth Dean’s Committee meeting held on 22nd August, 2014.

The first meeting of the Committee was held on 22nd August, 2014 to deliberate on terms of reference of Fifth Deans Committee, to discuss on baseline issues before the Committee and to Identify discipline wise conveners/co-conveners and discussion on their mode of working.

Prof. R. B. Singh, the Chairman mentioned that the task of the Committee is extremely important as its recommendations will result in the development of national human resource capital in the field of agriculture and allied sciences. It was felt that highest priority to agriculture is required for the alleviation of hunger, under nutrition and poverty. It was a general consensus that the country needs creation of skilled, talented, entrepreneurial human resource and knowledge pool, especially of young graduates, along the value chain. Thus course curricula for Agricultural Sciences and their delivery systems should be so designed that the graduates produced become job providers rather than job seekers. Their skill, scale and speed should harness demographic dividends, meet the fast growing demand for quality products and democratically promote inclusiveness. In other words, our educational system and course curricula must be designed and geared to ensure excellence, relevance and high quality of products, zero environment footprint, climate resilience, high efficiency, and competitiveness. In doing so, the voices of the farmers, industry, corporate sector, NGOs, Civil Society, scientists, teachers and, of course, students must be heard and duly internalized in the curricula.

The Committee endorsed the Terms of Reference given to it by the ICAR. It formulated and adopted a work schedule, constituted discipline-wise sub-committees and agreed on needed workshops and meetings.

The Committee reviewed the baseline issues addressed by the Fourth Deans Committee and found that the issues are equally valid even today. The Fourth Deans Committee had comprehensively addressed all these issues and made specific recommendations. Recognizing that the issues before the Fourth Deans Committee were equally relevant even today, the Committee retained them, often recapitulated, along with some of the new issues that it had identified, as listed below:

  1. Rising unemployment and poor employability of the graduates.

  2. Fast degrading natural resources and increasing negative effect of climate change.

  3. Declining quality of students, poor quality of education due to obsolete and inadequate equipment, laboratory, farm and library facilities, leading to knowledge-deficit all along the value-chain particularly in new emerging areas.

  4. Declining quality and depleting number of faculty members, lack of faculty competence in frontier and emerging areas, limited emphasis on refresher training, faculty improvement and incentives.

  5. Extensive inbreeding and lack of adequate skill, entrepreneurship and experiential learning.

  6. System’s inability to take full advantage of modern tools of management for efficient governance.

  7. Dwindled faculty in SAUs with majority chunk of the posts remaining vacant due to financial crunch.

  8. Curriculum and curriculum delivery not changed keeping in view global technology development.

  9. Lack of linkage of curriculum to employment in private agribusiness and processing industries and meeting the demands of extension.

  10. Existing curricula are short in informing and sensitizing the students and faculty about seriousness of the stubbornly high incidences of hunger, under nutrition, poverty, inequality, fast degrading natural resources- land, water and biodiversity and high vulnerability to climate change.

  11. Inadequate and declining investment and financial resources in agricultural universities/colleges; unmindful splitting of agricultural universities, and poor resource planning.

  12. Indifference to the needs of women, especially women students, scientists and farmers, increasing irrelevance of Home Science colleges and curricula.

  13. Poor governance, widening disconnect amongst education, research and extension, isolation from international exposure, and lack of evaluation, accountability and incentive system.

The Committee identified Conveners and Co-conveners for each discipline. Considering the large number of Colleges and diversified courses in Agriculture, the Committee agreed to identify one Convener and five Co-conveners under agriculture.

The Committee agreed on the following procedure to be adopted by the Conveners:

  • The Deans of all colleges to hold meetings with their faculty and discuss the changes/suggestions/improvements over the curricula recommended by the Fourth Deans Committee. Representatives of students, farmers, corporate sector, civil society organisations and other stakeholders may also be invited for the meeting for their valuable inputs.

It was suggested to consult the reports of the following Committees while formulating/suggesting revisions:

  1. “Human Capital Requirements in Agriculture and Allied Sciences”, by NAARM, Hyderabad (soft copy of the report will be made available).

  2. Report of the review committee (Chairman Prof. R. B. Lal) “Qualification and Degree Nomenclature” (available on ICAR website).

  3. Report of the ARS Review Committee (Chairman Dr R.S. Paroda) available on ICAR website.

  4. Report of the IV Deans Committee on Agricultural Education in India (available on ICAR website).

  5. Reports on new and restructured post graduate curricula & syllabi published by Education Division.

  6. Reports on Minimum Standards for Higher Agricultural Education uploaded by Education Division (available on ICAR website).

  • The Conveners and Co-conveners were requested to co-ordinate and hold a workshop of the Deans of all the colleges of their discipline, deliberate the suggestions made by different Deans and prepare a draft report of their discipline. Considering large number of Agricultural Colleges, it was suggested to hold region wise workshops to have productive deliberations.

The following Conveners and Co-conveners were identified by the Committee:


Dr. J. Kumar, Dean, College of Agriculture, Pantnagar Convener

Dr. J P Sharma, Dean, College of Agriculture, Jammu Co-convener (North)

Dr. H. Sivanna, Dean. College of Agriculture, GKVK, Bangalore Co-convener (South)

Dr. Srikant Das, Dean Faculty of Agriculture, BKVV, W. Bengal Co-convener (East)

Dr. S R Maloo, Dean, Rajasthan College of Agriculture Co-convener (West) Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture & Technology,


Dr. S K Rao, Dean Faculty of Agriculture, Jabalpur Co-convener (Central)

Horticulture & Sericulture

Dr. H B Lingaiah, Dean (Hort) College of Horticulture, Convener

VHS campus Bangalore.

Dr. A K Pandey, Dean, College of Horticulture & Forestry Co-convener

Central Agricultural University, Pasighat, Arunchal Pradesh.

Agricultural Engineering

Dr Ashwani Kumar Goel, Convener

Dean, College of Agri. Engg. CCSHAU, Hisar

Dr. P A Turbatmath, Dean, Faculty of Agri. Engg. Co-convener

MPKV, Rahuri, Maharashtra

Food Science & Technology

Dr. D C Joshi, Dean, College of FS&T, Anand, Gujarat. Convener

Dr. B V S Prasad, Assoc. Dean, Co-convener

College of Food Science & Technology, Bapatla, AP

Veterinary and Animal Sciences

Dr S A Asokan, Dean, MVC, Chennai Convener

Dr S K Garg, Dean, Mathura Vety. College, Mathura Co-convener

Fisheries Sciences

Dr K M Shankar, Dean, College of Fisheries, KVAFSU, Convener

Kankanady, Mangalore

Dr (Mrs.) Asha Dhawan, Dean College of Fisheries Co-convener

GADVASU, Ludhiana


Prof. P. Durairasu, Dean, Forest College and Research Institute Convener

Mellupalayam, Tamil Nadu.

Dr. K. Sudhakara , Dean, CoF, KAU, Thrissur Co-convener

Home Science

Dr. Rita S Raghuvanshi, Dean, College of Home Science, Pantnagar Convener

Dr. Sumati Rekha Malhotra, Co-Convener

Dean, College of Home Science, Palampur, Himachal Pradesh

Dairy Technology

Dr G R Patil, Dean & Joint Director, NDRI, Karnal Convener

Dr R R B Singh, Dean, (Dairy Technology), Faculty of Dairy Tech., Co-convener

Bihar Agricultural University, Patna

Agricultural Marketing, Business and Cooperation

Dr. H S Vijay Kumar, Director Education, Dharwad Convener


Dr H S Dhaliwal, Dean, College of Agriculture, Ludhiana Convener

Dr Anil Sirohi, Dean, College of Biotechnology, Modipuram, Meerut Co-convener

Summary of discussions in Fifth Dean’s Committee meeting held on 11 – 13 February, 2015.

After having completed the task at college level, the Convener & Co-conveners of all the disciplines convened meetings of Deans of their respective disciplines to finalize the recommendations based on the recommendations framed at the college/zonal level.

A workshop of the Committee Members/Conveners/Co-conveners was held in Delhi from 11 to 13 February, 2015. Discipline-wise reports prepared were presented in this workshop. Some of the Common Action Points emerged out of the discussions held in the workshop are listed below:

  1. It was a general consensus that total credit hours for a UG Degree across the disciplines should not exceed 168 (including the cafeteria/ optional courses).

  2. Semester –wise list of courses with credit hours be listed for each discipline highlighting the changes suggested over the Fourth Deans’ Committee.

  3. The cafeteria/ elective/ optional courses need to be customized according to the regional requirements.

  4. It was agreed by all to have Students READY Programme for 6 months duration by integrating both RAWE/ in-plant training and Experiential Learning modules preferably in VII semester so that the students are in campus during the VIII semester.

  5. Internships/ in house trainings, if any, may be accommodated in the semester breaks.

  6. The degree nomenclatures (both UG and PG) need to be uniform across the country in harmonization with the Minimum Standards of Higher Agriculture Education for the respective disciplines prepared by the Education Division, ICAR.

  7. Assignments/ seminars need to be made compulsory for all the students.

  8. Some courses like Environmental Studies and Disaster Management
    (as per UGC guidelines-core module for under graduate courses of all branches of higher education), Communication Skills and Personality Development, Information and Communication Technology, Entrepreneurship Development and Business Management, Agricultural Informatics and Economics and Marketing need to be cross-listed and suitably made a part of the curriculum/ syllabus for all the degree courses.

Based on the points raised above, the Members/Conveners/ Co-Conveners conducted meetings to finalise the draft recommendations. The Hon,ble Prime Minister on 25th July,2015 launched the Student READY programme with the following components:

      1. Experiential Learning - 24 Weeks

      2. Rural Agricultural Work Experience - 10 weeks

      3. In Plant Training/ Industrial Attachment - 10 Weeks

In view of the launch by the Hon’ble Prime Minister, it was decided to hold meetings of Members/Conveners/Co-conveners and some Special Invitees in Education Division, ICAR to design the Student READY programme for each discipline. The meetings were held in the months of August and September, 2015. The salient action points emerged during these meetings included:

        1. The emphasis should be given to Experiential Learning and RAWE programme. The Student READY programme should be made for one complete year devoting VII semester to RAWE and VIII semester to Experiential Learning/Hands on Training (HOT).

        2. All courses would be accommodated in the first six semesters.

        3. There should be cross-listed common courses as detailed above.

Summary of discussions in Fifth Dean’s Committee meeting held on 23 – 24 November, 2015.

A meeting of Members/Conveners/Co-conveners/Special Invitees was held on November 23-24, 2015 at New Delhi and draft reports including Student READY were presented. The following observations were made:

  1. The newly Introduced 11 optional courses, in the discipline of Agriculture, for the interested students to strengthen capabilities in the desired areas should be replaced with elective courses.

  2. Condition of optional courses being offered to only those students having OGPA of > 7%, as suggested by the convener for Agriculture, should be dropped to make the evaluation pattern uniform.

  3. The convener for Horticulture and Sericulture was requested to revise the Student READY programme as whole one year duration allotted for total 6 components under the program was divided between RAWE (6 months for 2 modules) and Industrial attachment (6 months) including educational tour, while other components were missing and duration for industrial attachment was considered to be too long.

  4. The courses on Environmental Science and Marketing and Cost Analysis, proposed by the Convener Horticulture & Sericulture, were suggested to be replaced by Environmental Science & Disaster Management and Agro Economics and Marketing, respectively

  5. It was suggested that all optional courses listed in Sericulture be made regular and in place of two separate courses as Silkworm Host Plant Genetics & Breeding and Silk Worm Genetics & Breeding, be merged and titled as Sericulture genetics and Breeding.

  6. Proposal of Convener, Food Science & Technology, for change of degree nomenclature from B. Tech (Food Technology) to B. Tech (Food Processing Technology) was not agreed and it was decided to retain the present nomenclature. Computer Programming course was suggested to be deleted from Food Science & Technology.

  7. Summer Training as a part of Student READY programme in Agriculture Engineering was suggested to be named as Skill Development Training. It was also suggested that time distribution among Student READY components of Agricultural Engineering be revised to allot 4 months (instead of 2) for student project and industrial training and Experiential Learning to be of 2 months each. It was further suggested that all Agricultural Engineering colleges should have Experiential Learning Units and in case these units are lying useless outsourcing of these units, could be a good option to generate money from them throughout the year. Courses on Megatronics, Hightech. Cultivation and E-sensoring were also suggested to be introduced in Agricultural Engineering

  8. The Under Graduate programme in Biotechnology structured by the Convener, Biotechnology, besides core courses in biotechnology, included some foundation courses on Agriculture, Animal Sciences, Basic Sciences, Soft Skills, Gender and Socioeconomic issues, and also Skill & Entrepreneurship Development component. In order to deliver the rigorous practical skill and entrepreneurial exposure. The developed programme has majority of the courses upto the sixth semester, with 7th and 8th semesters devoted exclusively for giving professional skills in selected combination of biotechnology modules and entrepreneurship development in biotechnology under ‘Student READY’ programme.

  9. It was suggested that swimming to be made as credit course in Fisheries Sciences. RAWE was suggested to be placed after 2nd and 3rd year rather than 1st and 2nd year. EL was suggested to be taken up before Industry attachment/training. Food Chemistry and Fish in nutrition was suggested to be revised to Food Chemistry and Fish and Fish in Human nutrition.

  10. It was observed that employability and entrepreneurship are major problems in forestry. Indian council of Forestry may be requested to look into the matter with student feedbacks. Apiculture be included within Agroforestry. Realistic assessment of the forestry graduates employability is necessary as Agroforestry students have no reservations in Forestry jobs, which is a major cause of concern among Forestry students.

  11. The fact that, student employability in the Dairy Technology from NDRI is 100%, and demand is for even much, was appreciated by the whole house. Title of the course Computer & Software applications was suggested to be changed as Computer Software applications. The condition of Hindi (1+0) course made mandatory for students, not offered hindi at matric level, was suggested to be ignored as Hindi has been made mandatory till matric level throughout the country. Members appreciated the efforts to highlight the success story of Dr. Kurien and Amul and to create Kurien Chair as a mark of respect to the father of White Revolution in India.

  12. Committee expressed serious concern over non-employability of Home Science discipline graduates and post graduates and few students opting for UG and PG programs. It was unanimously decided to split UG Home Science into two i.e B.Sc. Community Science & B.Sc. Human Nutrition & Dietetics of total 4 years duration, with 2 years assigned for common courses and next 2 years for specialized courses.

  13. A presentation was made by Dr M Murugan, Dean College of Poultry Production Technology on newly started course B Tech (Poultry Production Technology). The members were of the view that this course may not be included into the Fifth Deans’ Committee Report considering the following facts:

  1. The course does not include the whole management, including Poultry diseases which narrows the employment scope of these graduates.

  2. It is not clear whether it comes under the purview of VCI or Agriculture.

  3. It needs to be clarified that whether it is a Production Technology & Management, or a supplementary/alternative to Veterinary Sciences in AUs.

  4. Some members were of the view that since Poultry is a part of Livestock Production and Management (LPM), which itself is a part of Veterinary Sciences, this course may be offered only as diploma and not a degree.

  5. The employability of the students although quite good but is only in private poultry industry. The further scope for implementing this course in other Agri. Universities should be contemplated only after analyzing the student employability in view of probable clashes with Veterinary Sciences graduates.

  1. Special Session on Agriculture Marketing & Co-operation or Economics & Marketing

The UG courses in Agriculture Marketing & Co-operation or Economics & Marketing are being offered in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. The concerned colleges are not ready to agree upon a common nomenclature for UG degree considering expected future complications for the graduates who are presently being satisfactorily employed in otherwise satisfactory employer & UG degree holders in their respective states. In view of this and considering the fact that there is neither core faculty for Agribusiness Management nor good employment opportunities for the agribusiness graduates passed from the SAUs, it was decided not to include the course as a part of Agricultural Sciences.

  1. It was a general consensus that the Deans Committee should frame minimum standards and course curricula to meet requirement of the employers. Faculty Development Programmes also need to be framed properly for the better outcome from the Dean’s Committee.

  2. Some members were of the view that, in order to create a fair evaluation system and to make the students more accountable towards their studies, paper setting should be done by external faculty and evaluation should be made by the faculty, other than those teaching the subject.

  3. Since Veterinary Sciences is under the control of Veterinary Council of India (VCI), the nomenclature of UG degree in Veterinary Sciences decided by the VCI. There is a fixed nomenclature for the departments in Veterinary Sciences, hence, there is no scope of deliberations on nomenclature and other issues in Veterinary Sciences.

New Initiatives proposed by Fifth Deans’ Committee

1. Student READY (Rural and Entrepreneurship Awareness Development Yojana)

In compliance with the Student READY programme launched by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India on 25th July, 2015, the following components are proposed for conducting one year program in all the UG disciplines:

  • Experiential Learning

  • Rural Agriculture Work Experience

  • In Plant Training/ Industrial attachment

  • Hands-on training ( HOT) / Skill development training

  • Students Projects

The details of these components are provided in the next section.

2. Common Courses- It was a general consensus that students of all disciplines need to be taught the following courses:

  1. Environmental Studies and Disaster Management

  2. Communication Skills and Personality Development

  3. Information and Communication Technology

  4. Entrepreneurship Development and Business Management

  5. Agricultural Informatics

  6. Economics and Marketing

The details of these components are provided in the subsequent section.

3. New Programmes – Fifth Deans’ Committee has proposed introduction of following new courses:

  • B. Tech. (Biotechnology)

  • B.Sc. (Hons) Sericulture

  • B.Sc. (Hons) Home Science rechristened as Community Science

  • B.Sc. (Hons) Food Nutrition and Dietetics

4. DPRs for Establishment of new Colleges:

Fifth Deans’ Committee has Developed DPRs for establishment of colleges by integrating the recommendations of Committees on Minimum Standards on Higher Agricultural Education in terms of faculty strength, land requirement, departments and infrastructure.

5. Holistic distribution of courses:

The Committee has attempted to distribute courses in the following format to inculcate the Basics, Principles and Skills in a systematic way.

I year – Basic and fundamental courses

II Year – Principles

III Year – Production system

IV Year – Skill and entrepreneurship development

6. Declaring degrees in Agricultural Sciences as professional:

The committee strongly recommends that all degrees in the disciplines of Agricultural Sciences be declared as professional courses.

7. Implementation of recommendations:

The Committee strongly recommends that, to make the exercise meaningful, implementation of its recommendations should be mandatory for accreditation of academic programmes and academic institutions.

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