UPSC Exam Preparation: Topic of the Day – Rashtriya Uchchattar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA)
The Rashtriya Uchchattar Shiksha Abhiyan or RUSA in its abbreviated form is an all-inclusive higher education development scheme initiated by the Human Resources Development ministry, GOI in the year 2013. It is a centrally sponsored scheme launched to provide strategic funding to eligible higher educational institutions in the States. The name of the scheme in Hindi translates in English to National Higher Education Mission. It intends to provide strategic funding to institutes of higher education all over India. The funding for the scheme is provided by the Central government through State and UT governments. The financial, administrative and academic developments under the scheme will be coordinated by the Project Appraisal Board.
The salient objectives of RUSA are to:
- Ensure reforms in the examination systems, academics and affiliation.
- Ensure quality faculties are available in adequate numbers in all the higher educational institutions and ensure capacity building at each and every level of employment.
- Create a conducive environment in the higher educational institutions to promote research culture and innovation.
- Provide equal opportunities of higher education to socially and educationally backward classes, SCs and STs, at the same time promote inclusion of minorities, specially abled persons and women in the higher education institutions in order to improve equity in higher education.
The scheme is largely based on the conditional release of funds linked to reforms in the key areas of governance, learning-teaching outcomes, reaching out to the unreached and infrastructure support.
- RUSA is a process-driven scheme.
- RUSA’s design and conceptualization were finalized through extensive consultations with all key stakeholders, especially State governments.
- Preparatory grants were released to States to have the required systems, processes, and the technical support in place.
- Geo-tagging, introduction of a public financial management system, a fund tracker and reform tracker system and regular video conferences have proved effective tools for evaluation of the performance of the scheme.