Study In India


The Beginning

The Indian education system began with ancient scriptures thousands of years ago. It has now transformed into modern-day education imparted in the finest of institutions. The network of 42,000+ colleges and 1000+ universities have aided India to become an attractive education hub for international students. The same richness of Indian higher education needed due focus and led to the birth of the idea of the Study in India programme.

Indian Higher Education System

India has one of the largest higher education systems in the world that stands second in terms of the higher education network. The term ‘higher education’ with respect to India denotes the tertiary level education that is imparted after 12 years of schooling (10 years of primary education and 2 years of secondary education). The entire higher education ecosystem in India comprises around 1000+ universities and 42,000+ colleges imparting exceptional education. All these institutions fall under the purview of the Ministry of Education.

The institutions in India are furnished with state-of-the-art infrastructure, modern libraries, classrooms equipped with advanced amenities (such as smart class, computers, wifi-connectivity, etc). All in all, these top-grade resources facilitate interactive and 360-degree learning for the students. Due to these salient features, 3 Indian institutes namely, the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), the National Institutes of Technology (NITs), Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISERs) and Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) have been featured in world top-ranking institutions lists. This solidifies the belief that India is emerging as a major education hub for both international and national students.

Over the years with the combined efforts of public and private players, Indian higher education has grown impressively. The top-notch learning methodology opted in Indian institutes lets the students expand their visualizing ability and encourages them to think out of the box....

The Landscape of Indian Higher Education

The structure of Indian Higher Education is three-layered, consisting of Universities, Colleges and Courses. The universities and colleges work in unison with regulatory as well as accreditation bodies to deliver standardized education.


On the basis of management the universities are classified as:

Central Universities: These are set up through an Act in Parliament. The establishment and operation are funded by the Union Government.

State Universities - These are set up through an Act in the State Legislature. The state universities are primarily funded and operated by the State Government.

Private Universities - These are set up through an Act in the State Legislatures. It includes specialized institutions and multidisciplinary research universities.

Deemed Universities - These are well-performing institutes that are declared to be of equal standing as the universities by the Central Government on the advice of the Union Grants Commission (UGC).

Institutes of National Importance (INI) - These are eminent institutions of India that are known to develop highly skilled individuals. They are funded by the Government of India and include all the IITs, NITs and AIIMs institutes.

Note: Apart from the Institutes of National Importance, the UGC has set a recognition scheme for Indian higher education institutes (in 2017) according to which a total of 20 institutions will be granted the status Institute of Eminence. Until now 12 institutes have been granted this status.


The colleges enabling higher education in India can be affiliated either with central or state universities. The private colleges are mostly affiliated with state universities. Further, there are autonomous colleges as well that enjoy autonomy in terms of deciding curriculum, admissions and examination process. But, they are also affiliated with a government university (central or state).


The courses offered in Indian higher education institutions can be generally classified into two categories:

STEM Courses - STEM is a broad term that stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics and it encompasses all the courses providing education in these disciplines. Instead of teaching the four disciplines separately, the purpose of STEM courses involves cohesive learning and it focuses on the practical application of the subjects. Effective education in STEM courses is not limited to theoretical learning but extends to experimental and research-based learning too. The well-equipped laboratories of Indian institutes enable the same and help the students to inculcate innovative, problem-solving and competent skills.

Non- STEM Courses - The courses offered in disciplines such as Commerce, Arts, Business Management, Humanities, and Social Affairs are termed non-STEM courses. Yet again, the Indian institutions are well equipped to provide education in these disciplines wherein the students can gain expertise in the subject of their choice. Non-STEM majors like humanities open a wide range of career opportunities where the skills, knowledge and deeper understanding are made applicable. Similarly, education, accounting, marketing, English, journalism, language studies, etc degrees all have plenty of uses for various professions. A few examples for career options under non-STEM courses include counselors, education administrators, teachers, clinical psychologists, art or creative director, etc.

The Regulatory Structure

The entire ecosystem of higher education in India is primarily overseen by the following authorities-


The main regulatory body that performs a range of tasks such as providing funds to the universities, establishing education standards for the universities and analysing the growth of the various higher education institutions. It is crucial for universities to meet the criteria set by UGC so as to enjoy degree-awarding authority.


The regulatory body that coordinates, plans and develops technical education in the country.

Finally, the accreditation of the universities and colleges is overseen by the NAAC and NIRF.

The paradigm shift in the higher education system in India is aided by the integration of the latest innovation and technology. The transformed system focuses on the inclusive development of the learners and the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 ensures the same. The main purpose of NEP 2020 is to implement and strengthen multidisciplinary, inclusive and technology-based learning that is accessible to all. It focuses on imparting higher education that enables personal accomplishment for students and prepares them to pave a good future. In addition to this, the policy highlights the need for the internationalization of higher education. For this, the Indian higher education institutions are being promoted on the world stage through programmes such as Study in India and International Students Offices.

Furthermore, the NEP 2020 granted increased flexibility to the institutions according to which they have the right to create a curriculum and decide the internal assessment so as to execute an interactive learning experience for the students. In short, the underlying aim of the entire higher education system will be to attain global standards in terms of quality.India with its valuable and competitive education ecosystem is an attractive option for international students. Moreover, the freshly implemented policies further push the development of constructive skill-sets in the students. The overall culture, tradition, heritage, spirit, and inclination towards creativity and innovation make India a great study destination for higher education.

Broad Framework For The Categorization of Universities

The UGC categorises the Indian institutions in broadly three categories:


A university is recognised as Category - I if it fulfils one or more of the following parameters:

  • Should have been accredited by NAAC with a score of 3.51 or above;

  • Should have received a corresponding accreditation grade/ score from a reputed accreditation agency chosen by the UGC;

  • Should have been ranked among the top 500 of reputed world rankings, such as Times Higher Education or QS.


A university is recognised as Category - II if it fulfils one or more of the following parameters:

  • Should have been accredited by NAAC with a score of 3.26 and above, up to 3.50; or,

  • Should have received a corresponding accreditation grade/score from a reputed accreditation agency chosen by the UGC.


A university is recognised as Category-III University if it doesn’t fall under the above two categories.

The Accrediting Organizations

The quality and standard assessment of higher education institutions are overseen primarily by two organizations NAAC and NIRF. A brief detail of both of them can be found below.


The National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) is an autonomous organization set up by University Grants Commission and it is headquartered in Bengaluru. The main function of NAAC is to ensure that quality is the defining feature of higher education in India. It facilitates performance assessment and inspection for volunteering higher education institutions through a series of parameters. The accreditation granted by NAAC helps the institutions to identify and amend their internal planning areas, resource allocation and weakness through an extensive review procedure. On the other hand, the students get reliable information in terms of quality education offered by the concerned institution.

Assessment Criteria: According to NAAC there are seven criteria that serve as the base for the assessment process of the higher education institutions. For a simplified approach, NAAC has classified the Higher Education Institutions into three categories namely- University, Autonomous College and Affiliated College for evaluating the quality standards. The major criteria for assessment are-

    Curricular Aspects

      Teaching-Learning and Evaluation

        Research, Innovations and Extension

          Infrastructure and Learning Resources

            Student Support and Progression

              Governance, Leadership and Management

                Institutional Values and Best Practices

                Eligibility Criteria For Institutions: The higher education institutions that either have been in existence for six years or have a record of a minimum of two batches of graduated students can apply for the assessment and accreditation process by NAAC.

                ABOUT NIRF

                The National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) is the methodology approved and launched by the Ministry of Education (erstwhile known as Human Resource Development) that outlines the procedure of ranking higher education institutes across India. The methodology revolves around ranking the institutions based on five broad categories which are sub-categorised as well.

                For the simplified approach, the institutions are grouped as - Category A (Institutions of National Importance, State Universities, Deemed-To-be-Universities, Private Universities and Autonomous institutions) and Category B (Institutions affiliated to a University).

                Assessment Criteria: There are five parameters opted by the NAAC in order to rank the Indian higher education institutions and these set of parameters are -

                  Teaching, Learning & Resources

                    Student Strength including doctoral students (SS)

                      Faculty-student ratio with emphasis on permanent faculty (FSR)

                        Combined metric for faculty with PhD and experience (FQE)

                          Financial resources and their utilisation

                          GRADE CONVERSIONThe grade conversion data mentioned below is indicative information.

                            The students can refer to the following table to convert their grade (as per the grading system followed in their respective countries) in percentage as recommended for the Study in India programme.

                              Students can consult their respective education boards for the exact Grade/GPA conversions.

                                The formulae given in the reference conversion table are only approximate values and it may not derive the exact result.

                                  The submitted scores in percentages would be verified by the Indian Authorities and their decision in this regard would be binding for the student.

                                    The home country as mentioned in the following reference table is the country of the participating student.

                                    UNIVERSITIES LIST

                                      The NorthCap University   (

                                      C. V. RAMAN Global University – Best Private University In India For Technical Education (

                                      UNIVERSITIES AND COLLEGES AVAILABLE

                                      Some of the universities and colleges you can look forward to, for studying in the India: