BEST PRACTICE 1
Title of the practice –Academic Performance Enhancement Practice (APEP)
Objectives of the practice
Academic Performance Enhancement Practice (APEP) has been implemented with the following objectives:
1. To focus on enhancing academic performance of slow and mediocre learners by making the teaching learning process effective.
2. To improve and advance learning experiences through versatile assessment methods.
3. To upgrade the academic excellence of advanced learners.
4. To enable students to face university exams without fear and to view it as an avenue to demonstrate their learning and knowledge.
5. To help the students reflect on past exam experiences and to review the key strategies for doing well in the university exams.
6. To ensure academic excellence of the institution through academic performance of students.
As per Mahatma Gandhi University examination regulations 2013, the pass GPA had increased from 0.5 to 1.8 on a four-point scale. This shift became a great challenge to the students as they had to score a higher pass mark in the internal as well as in the University examinations.The difficulties of the students to face the university exams and the fear and anxiety of writing exams were identified in the mentoring sessions. These were taken up for discussion in the parent teacher meetings. The College Council and IQAC decided to devote a specific period of time apart from the regular working hours to address the issue by introducing APEP in 2016.
Academic Performance Enhancement Practice (APEP) is a systematic assessment method to analyse the academic performance of the students and it strategically evaluates the effectiveness of learning by measuring the learner’s performance. Through this method, instructors help the students to realise their strengths and weaknesses and enable them to reflect on how they can improve themselves in the university exams.
By following a disciplined format, an extra half an hour is devoted for carrying out various assessment methods for improving exam writing skills of students. It helps to improve the performance of students in the continuous assessment as well as in the university exams. Before introducing this practice, the regular working time of the college was from 10 am to 3.30 pm. For the smooth conduct of the practice, the working time of the college was augmented by half an hour by rescheduling the classes to commence from 9.30 am. Everyday, from 09.30 am to 10 am, all the department conduct brainstorming sessions, quizzes and reverse quizzes, group discussions, academic puzzles, mock viva and tests on various topics. Students are informed prior to the assessment and are given ample time to prepare for the same.
Teachers in charge of each subject update the grades of the students to the mentors/class tutors, which helps in identifying underperforming students, making timely intervention possible. The teachers give proper guidance to the students for improving their scores in continuous assessment through remedial teaching, peer teaching and various assessment methods. The marks of the assessment are entered in the online portal ERP, which keeps the parents updated about the performance of their wards in each stage of the programme.
Over the five years, teaching faculty has generated around 16200 extra working hours and 480000 hours of students’ learning hours. Collectively, this practice has generated 496200 extra learning hours approximately. This has fostered the learning capabilities of the students and has enhanced their competency in their respective subjects. Academic Performance Enhancement Practice has become part of continuous assessment, making the continuous evaluation process more constructive.
APEP hence turned out to be a consistent and efficacious method of assessing the knowledge of students, crucial to student engagement and improved learning outcomes. This has helped teachers to set targets for learners and help them adapt to teaching learning practice effectively.
Evidence of Success
A student satisfaction survey was conducted among the students to analyses the concerns regarding APEP. The survey findings and result analysis point to the success of the practice initiated in the college. The survey findings are:
• Through effective revision strategies, the students were able to better their performance in university and internal exams.
• It instilled confidence among the students for facing the university exams and in time management.
• The teachers could properly guide the students regarding areas that needed improvement.
Findings of result analysis –
• As per the University result analysis, pass percentage of the college improved significantly and average SGPA of the students increased. After APEP was implemented, the average SGPA of the 2014-2017 batch increased from 7.5 in IV semester to 8.00 in V semester. Also the average SGPA of the 2015-2018 batch
increased from 7.1765 in II semester to 7.4282 in III semester. Compared to the 2013- 2016 batch where APEP was not conducted, the average SGPA shows an increase in 2014-2017 and 2015-2018.
• The number of the students among the first ten positions in the university has increased over the years.
As the working time of the college changed from 10 am to 9.30 am, the students who were coming from distant places had difficulties reaching on time. Due to the difficulty of the students, the APEP got shifted from 12.30 pm to 1.00 pm. As extra time was carved out of the normal working hours the time schedule was slightly affected in the beginning. This issue was resolved through regularization of the practice. Students had to get familiarized with the new time schedule which caused some difficulties in the beginning which was later resolved. As APEP required continuous monitoring, teachers had to take extra effort in understanding the difficulties of students. Teachers had to convince and motivate the students regarding the effectiveness of APEP and also had to conduct informal Parent Teacher meetings for bringing forth the attention of the parents in improving the performance of students.
BEST PRACTICE 2
LIVE LAB – ‘Sajeev Prayogashala
Objectives of the Practice:
- To create the ability to surpass classroom and lab barriers by applying theory in real life situations.
- To enrich the curriculum and develop the entrepreneurial, technical and administrative skills of the students. .
- To provide hands- on learning opportunities that merge academics and campus facilities through skill based learning.
- To prepare students for attaining higher learning outcomes.
- To apply the aspect of multidisciplinary approach in education.
- To provide a space for students for innovation, leadership, enhance social commitment, community engagement and prepare students for careers after college.
- To foster intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, self-reflection, professionalism and sensitivity to one’s socio-cultural environment.
The college initiated the practice of live lab, ‘learning by doing’ in 2017 in the context of outcome based education and multidisciplinary approach in higher education. Live Lab strives toward a more holistic experience for the students, while focusing not just on knowledge delivery in higher education but on the application of knowledge in real life experiences. The college introduced this unique practice as it envisions attainment of higher cognitive skills by students through learning by doing. This experiential learning system helps students in applying their knowledge gained in the classrooms in a non-classroom environment. This practice assists the students in identifying their real interests and to carve their own path to success.
The college practices live labs on multiple levels: SWAAD (Student Work in Alternate and Allied Domains), Nurtury- Child Care Initiative, Student Social Initiative, Diet and Stress Management Clinic, Student Digital Initiative, Student Amenity Centre and BCM Voice. As part of this practice, the college calls applications from interested students to participate in various live labs. The live labs work according to the schedule put forth by the concerned departments. After screening by the concerned HoDs, students join live labs of their choice and get trained by respective faculty.
1.SWAAD (Student Work in Alternate and Allied Domains)
This unique practice, headed by the Department of Food Science promotes entrepreneurial skills, technical skills and managerial skills to motivate, train and support budding entrepreneurs. As part of this practice, students are given duties in the canteen and coffee shop on a rotation basis where supervision of menu, purchase, finance, and quality checks are done. Food Tic incubation centre initiates students to undertake product formulations through research, trial and error and standardization.
2.Nurtury- Child Care Initiative
NURTURY functions under the guidance of the Home Science department by providing classes on preparation of teaching aids and creative toys for assessing children with disabilities. Suggesting interventions and remedies for special children (Learning Disability, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), monitoring the growth and assessing the holistic development of children are also part of the initiative.
3.Student Social Initiative
The Student Social Initiative headed by the Department of Social Work in association with The Child Resource Centre organises programmes with regard to protection of child rights. As part of the practice, students coordinate ‘Student Durbar’- an open forum to discuss child related issues, street plays and summer camps. Students also coordinate the cultural event, ‘Samanuaya Sandhya’ and provide special training to the inmates of children’s homes and to differently abled children. This practice enables to create a literary space to voice child related issues in the journal, ‘December 10’.
4.Diet and Stress Management Clinic
The practice managed by the Department of Home Science provides right health tips and diet plans for staff and students. The live lab trains students about stress management techniques, basic nutritional and health assessment.
5.Student Digital Initiative
Under this initiative, students of the Department of Computer Science maintain and update all the LINUX installed systems in the campus. By using digital printing, students prepare identity cards for staff and students. Students impart e- learning skills among the women in the local community. QR codes are generated for all systems under this initiative for proper infrastructure maintenance. Through the programme, ‘Know our Campus Flora’, QR codes have been installed in trees and plants in the campus and all information regarding the flora can be taken by scanning the code.
6.Student Amenity Centre
The college has entrusted the conduct of the Student Amenity centre with the Department of Commerce from the year 2021. It functions as a center for providing various services on campus to the students, teachers, and nonteaching staff. This practice enables the students to familiarise with current business processes and practices. It helps in understanding consumer behaviour, develops good marketing sense and equips them to start their own enterprises. The students are also exposed to the fundamentals of banking and practical aspects of accountancy.
BCM Voice, a recording studio functions under the guidance of the Department of English. It gives them an ideal opportunity to put into practice what they have learnt through On-the-Job Training. This aims to update the college community on the latest events within the campus, embracing and fostering various cultural practices and making mass appeals to fellow students. It builds an inclusive atmosphere, allowing students to give a voice to their views, gain technical knowledge and build their confidence.
Evidence of Success
- Building of successful entrepreneurs
- Effective management of canteen and coffee shop in the campus.
- Development of new innovative products in the incubation centre.
- Inculcating research aptitude in the minds of students.
- Creation of healthy and practical food choices.
Nurtury- Child care initiative
- Creation of distinct learning aids and creative toys for differently abled children and learning disabled.
- Early detection of learning disabilities of children and prevention of behavioral problems in a later stage.
- Acquainting parents with the learning difficulties of children.
- Enhancing creativity of students.
Student Social Initiative
- Awareness to students about child related issues.
- Formation of civic responsibility, critical thinking and leadership skills.
- Strengthens community engagement.
- Enhancing social sensitivity of students.
Student digital Initiative
- Timely updation and maintenance of the computer systems in the college.
- Installation of QR codes in the systems
- Timely issue of the ID cards.
- Successful installation of QR codes in the flora on campus.
Diet and Stress Management Clinic
- Provides appropriate diet plans for staff and students
- Monitors and busts stress of the staff and students.
- Motivates staff and students to follow a healthy lifestyle.
Student Amenity Centre
- Enhancement of interpersonal skills
- Developing skills in accounting
- Building up inventory management skills.
- Augmenting fund management skill
- Platform for communicating information regarding various curricular, co-curricular and extra-curricular activities in the campus.
- Development of communication skills of students.
- Updating students about the current scenario, local news and events.
- Acts as a key to foster ‘campus identity’.
In the varied contexts, the live lab provided the best practical learning experience to complement the learning skills of students. It acted as a skill enhancement centre for attaining higher cognitive levels of learning for students. This multidisciplinary learning approach helped students to break knowledge barriers and enhance the scope and depth of learning, thereby becoming highly competent professionals.
The SWAAD faced difficulty in teaching product formulations to students with no knowledge of the same, which later got solved through practice. The canteen managers found it difficult to manage the crowd of students during the tea break. This was solved by providing a coffee bar and a canteen aid on campus. The Child Right Centre had some initial difficulties in countering less cooperation from outside communities which was later resolved by proper communication with the concerned people. The Student Digital Initiative initially faced difficulties with regard to application of the large scale updation. With regard to the Child care initiative, the students have found it difficult to convince the parents of the children who are diagnosed with learning disabilities like ADHD. Inability to change certain eating habits and difficulty in sticking to long term eating habits by the clients are the major challenges faced by diet clinic. In the beginning while distributing the textbooks, The Student Amenity Centre faced a difficulty in managing the distribution of textbooks in the beginning, which later got resolved by taking orders and bundling books to the concerned departments. During the launching of BCM Voice, students faced difficulties in coordinating news.