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Criterion VII Innovation and Best Practices


7.1 Environment Consciousness
7.1.1 Does the College conduct a Green Audit of its Campus?
Environment consciousness is enshrined in the mission of the college
and tree plantation is the major concern of the management to maintain
the pristine purity and beauty of the college to provide a congenial
atmosphere for the academic and non-academic pursuits.
The barren hillock on which the college is situated is transformed with
plantation into a haven of flora and fauna. Felling of one tree for the
construction of building to meet the growing academic requirements is
replaced by planting a few trees on the campus. Green audit of the
campus is carried out by the staff periodically by supervising the
maintenance of the existing trees and locating places for planting new
trees. Nurturing Plants is one of the non-academic pursuits that
develop eco-concern among the students.
Areas are assigned to NSS, JAC Eco Club and the departments for
planting, watering, weeding and maintaining the plants, greens, herbs
and trees; the yearly addition of trees to the green campus is the joint
venture of NSS, JAC Eco Club and the Forest Department,
Government of Tamil Nadu. Personal experience of sowing seeds,
watering plants, preparing and using organic manure, removing weeds
etc., has ecologically sensitized the NSS Volunteers, JAC Eco Club
members and other students.
The open air gallery serves as a green background for college level
functions and a lounge for students at lunch break.
7.1.2 What are the initiatives taken by the College to make the campus
eco - friendly?
 Energy Conservation
Minimal consumption of energy is the saving factor of energy
conservation in the campus. The notices near the switch boards prevent
wastage of energy. The use of CFL bulbs instead of tungsten lamps,
team and collaborative work in the same place, using open air gallery
for conducting college level meetings and functions, classes on the
open stage in pleasant weather and ward meetings under the trees
reduce energy consumption.
Solar inverters for fans and lights in the convents, solar lights and
water heaters in the hostel and the convents, solar lights in the campus
pathways, bio gas, gobar gas and gas from night soil plants for cooking
have reduced the use of LPG. Observation of ‘Electricity Saving Day’

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has educated the stakeholders of the danger of natural resource

depletion and the need for energy conservation.
 Use of Renewable energy
The identification of renewable, sustainable and affordable energy
sources has led to the installation of ‘Solar Park’ with 30 percent
subsidy from the Government. Solar energy is one of the sources for
lights, fans, heaters used in the residences and the college.
Bathing water in the hostel is treated and used for drip irrigation in the
flower gardens and orchards. 2/3 of water from RO Plants is treated
and used for plants and trees in the college and for washing cows and
cowsheds in the hostel.
Renewable gas from cow dung, night soil and garbage is used for
steam cooking with the modern kitchen equipments.
 Rain Water-Harvesting
Arresting the water flow down the hillock in the rainy season is a great
challenge to the management. Five rain water tanks are constructed for
harvesting rain water to prevent soil erosion and meet the water
requirements partially. The rain water is channelized towards bore
wells to raise the ground water level. Since the college well is much
below the road level, water level rises in rainy season. Water analysis
of the well water shows the reduction of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)
as a proof for the increase in the water level. Frugal use of water has
ensured constant supply of water for the stakeholders in the college.
 Check Dam Construction
The natural blocks and the steps constructed on the slope of the hill
arrest the speed of water flow at the college. The check dam not only
prevents soil erosion but also stores water for different purposes
especially, irrigation.
 Efforts for Carbon Neutrality
Proper measures have been taken to reduce carbon emission to keep
the campus, pollution-free and uncontaminated. The College buses and
the ladies special buses from Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation
fetch students and staff to the college and avoid their use of individual
vehicles. The College buses and other vehicles are checked by the
RTO and provided with (CNG) pollution-free stickers. The out buses
are forbidden to enter the college premises. Car pooling or share auto
system is used by staff for transport and conveyance. Carbon emission
is minimized and neutralized by Nerium pathways at the entrance of
the college. Planting a variety of trees and kitchen gardens has
contributed to carbon neutrality in the campus. The Ten

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Commandments formulated by JAC Eco Club inculcate eco-concern in

the stakeholders to participate in eco-based activities.
 Plantation
The green ambience of the college is largely due to tree plantation.
There are about 3000 trees of various kinds in the campus. Trees have
nearly covered 2/3 of the college area. They help to maintain the
ecosystem. Planting of saplings by the chief guests of various functions
evinces the eco-consciousness inherent in the college practices.
Planting a large number of trees in the adopted villages is one of the
regular features of the NSS Special Camps.
The coconut grove formed by NSS has become a regular source of
income to Thamaraikulam Panchayat Union. 40,000 Jatropha curcas
saplings planted in the villages under Vadipatti Panchayat Union
generate income for the villagers. Drought resisting plants have been
grown in the villages to reduce pollution. Trees planted by the NSS
volunteers on the two sides of the pathways from Kailasapatti to
Kailasanathar Temple provide shade to the devotees. The projects of
JAC Eco Club members serve as bio-diversity documentation.
Table 7.1. List of Trees on the Campus

Trees Number Trees Number

Acacia catechu 34 Lawsonia inermis 1
Albizia lebbeck 41 Manilkara zapota 280
Anacardium Millingtonia
4 11
occidentale hortensis
Annona muricata 10 Moringa oleifera 41
Annona squamosa 35 14
Araucaria 3 Murraya koenigii 15
Areca catechu 1 24
1 Phoenix pusilla 7
Azadirachta indica 649 10
Calliandra Phyllanthus
4 4
calothyrsus emblica
Callistemon Pithecellobium
1 2
lanceolatus dulce
Carica papaya 26 54
Cassia fistula 5 Pongamia 95

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Cassia grandis 12 Pouteria lucuma 2
Citrus aurantium 3 Psidium guajava 40
Citrus limon 11 Punica granatum 4
Citrus sinensis 1 Santalum album 1
Cocos nucifera 176 225
Ficus benghalensis 1 Tectona grandis 133
Ficus racemosa 6 2
Ficus religiosa 2 Tocoma stans 46

 Hazardous Waste Management

‘Plastic Free Zone Campaign’ conducted in 2008 has brought down the
usage of disposable plastic goods to the minimum. Degradable waste is
processed and the gas produced from it is used for cooking purpose in
the college residences. Non-degradable waste was once sent to
Pollution Control Board at the Collectorate, Theni District for
recycling. Eradication of Parthenium plant is a regular activity of NSS
and JAC Eco Club to tackle health hazards in and out of the college.
 E-waste Management
Electronic goods are put to optimum use; the minor repairs are set right
by the staff and the Laboratory assistants; and the major repairs, by the
professional technicians, and are reused. The damaged computers are
used by the instructor in the practical sessions of the ‘Certificate
Course in Computer Maintenance and Hardware. Finally they are
exchanged with the local dealers. UPS Batteries are recharged /
repaired / exchanged by the suppliers. The waste compact discs are
used by students for decoration and participation in competitions on
‘Art from Waste’. When they fall out of use, they are handed over to
the agent of the suppliers of electronic equipments.
 Any Other
The creation of an eco-friendly atmosphere is a remarkable mission of
the JAC Eco Club. Giving training in Nature-Conservation and Eco-
development, giving awareness about de-forestation and global
warming, preparing vermicompost pits, planting saplings, visiting the
natural eco systems like local water bodies and nearby forests (Vaigai
Dam and Kodaikanal) and conducting competitions to reinforce the
significance of Environmental protection are some of the activities of
the JAC Eco Club.
The Avian Club members are motivated to observe birds as they play a
vital role by acting as bio-indicators. The members of the club have

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done commendable work in identifying different species of birds on

the campus and in the wetlands of Theni District.
The II UG students are sent to participate in the training programme on
Environmental studies for three days at Anglade Institute of Natural
History, Kodaikanal.
Environmental awareness is given by NSS, JACEP, JACSAFA and
Harmony Club in and around the college.
JAC, a member of five colleges with Lady Doak College, Madurai as
the Nodal Agency under UBCHEA, has contributed a unit to the
syllabus on Environmental Studies. UBCHEA sponsored one day
seminar on Environmental Studies was conducted during 2012-2013 at
the college. The resource person from CPR Foundation for
Environmental Studies, Chennai, highlighted the need for preserving
the environment.
The College received the prestigious ‘Environmental Awareness
Award’ from the Khadi and Village Industries Development Agency of
India, New Delhi, in association with Indian Institute of Ecology and
Environment, New Delhi in 2008-2009.
7.2 Innovations
7.2.1 Provide details of innovations introduced during the last five years
which have created a positive impact on the functioning of the
Innovations made in academic and related activities speak of the
progress of the college in leaps and bounds. The details of the
innovations are given below:
Innovations in Curricular Aspects
 Introduction of new interdisciplinary courses in core and elective.
 UGC sponsored Career Oriented Course in “Communicative Skills
and Functional English”
 UGC sponsored Certificate Course in “Human Rights and Duties
 Mandatory UG projects
 Certificate course in “Basic Counsellor Training Programme” for
 Computer based courses in SBE for semesters I and II under three
streams based on the basic computer knowledge of the students
 Term-wise teaching plan of the faculty
 Certificate courses further enhances and widen the knowledge and
skills of the students

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Innovations in Teaching, Learning and Evaluation

 ICT enabled classrooms
 Installation of Interactive Boards
 Web assignments
 Free Internet access for 8 hours per year
 10 day intensive Spoken English training programme for the
 Marketing techniques through Trade Show and College Bazaar
 Counsellor training programme for the faculty
 SET / NET coaching by Minority Coaching Cell
 Online selection of SBE and NME
 Internal Improvement Examination for students unable to pass after
two attempts in semester examination
Innovations in Research, Consultancy and Extension
 Major research projects funded by UGC
 Paper presentations abroad
 Interdisciplinary major research projects
 Publication of Ph.D. theses as books
 Student projects funded by TNSCST
 Paper publications by students
 Projects for an industry (CS)
 Project by III B.Sc. CS students for the creation of database for the
college and the congregation
 Internet laboratory for residential students
 Training on “Preparation of Paper bags” to students and Self Help
Group women by JACEP
 Initiation of Consultancy cell
Innovations in Infrastructure and Learning Resources
 Indoor Sports Centre
 St. Joseph’s Women’s Hostel with UGC grant
 New Chemistry Block
 Establishment of BSR laboratory
 RO Drinking water plant
 Bar-coding system and Surveillance camera in the central library
 Library stock verification by the Computer Assisted-Portable Data
Collection Terminal
 Ceramic boards in classrooms

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Innovations in Students Support and Progression

 Self-study papers to earn extra credits
 Voters ID for students
 National Voter’s day celebrations
 Human Chain and Awareness Programme on “Summary Revision
2013” to make corrections in the voters list
 Free lunch to poor students
 Availing all new scholarships from State / Central Governments
 Grievance boxes at various places
 Computerization of student profile
Innovations in Governance, Leadership and Management
 JACSAFA-Youth Parliament
 Biometric attendance for faculty
 CIA mark entry through Intranet
 Initiation of Harmony Club, Consumer Club, HOPE Club and
Dance Club
 Internet connection to the departments
 6 Security Marks in Grade sheets
 Solar lights and solar water heaters in the campus

7.3 Best Practices

7.3.1 Give details of any two best practices which have contributed to
better academic and administrative functioning of the college.
Best Practice – I
1. Title of the Practice : JACEP
JACEP (Jayaraj Annapackiam College Extension Programme) is an
extension programme, an integral part of higher education. The
College aspires to focus on the overall personality development of the
students along with the academic excellence. It is one of the best
practices used to realize the goals of the college - the empowerment of
rural women and bringing about social changes.
2. Objectives of the practice
What are the objectives / intended outcomes of this ‘‘best
practice’’ and what are the underlying principles or concepts of
these practices (in about 100 words)?
The lofty objectives of JACEP are

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• To liberate the weaker sections of the rural areas from the shackles of
the perennial, economic, social, political and educational constraints
• To provide social dimension to the educational system of the college
and inculcate social responsibility and commitment in students
• To bring forth the team spirit and leadership qualities of the students
and broaden their social outlook that will help them work for the
welfare of the community
• To restore gender equity and make available equal opportunities to
emerge full-fledged and take up new ventures
3. The Context
What were the contextual features or challenging issues that
needed to be addressed in designing and implementing this
practice (in about 150 words)?
Periyakulam is amidst the labyrinth of tiny villages, some with very
thin population and incredibly with lowest percentage of literacy.
Ignorance and illiteracy estrange them from the fast moving hi-tech
world. Hence it is imperative on the part of the college to extend their
service and give exposure which is the dire need of the people. JACEP
is dauntless in launching well-planned activities. It has adopted 14
villages to ensure wholesome development of the villages within 30
kms from the college. It has taken all appropriate measures to empower
the rural women to progress in their life.
The watch word of JACEP is to develop concern for the voiceless and
faceless. It makes them identify their strengths, weaknesses and be
aware of social problems. It also creates awareness of the Government
Welfare schemes. Another important mission of JACEP is to equip the
Self Help Group Women with traditional and modern skills of different
trades, to generate income and improve their financial status.
4. The Practice
Describe the practice and its uniqueness in the context of Indian
higher education. What were the constraints / limitations, if any,
faced (in about 400 words)?
JACEP is a programme, unique in its context and practice. It is offered
under Part-V of the curriculum in IV and V semesters for 70 contact
hours and has three phases:

• Meticulous survey to identify the needs of the adopted villages

• Realistic assessment of available resources and drafting viable plans
• Activities undertaken by the students with the co-operation of the
villagers for their development.

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The target groups in the villages face several problems regarding

access to education, health facility, drinking water supply, power
supply and transport. The student volunteers of each class are divided
into six groups to take up different tasks executed in 70 hours to reach
specified target. It is accomplished by the end of their degree.
The six groups are assigned the tasks related to Environment, Health
and Hygiene, Education, People’s organization, Application of
Knowledge and Liaison with Government Agencies. Organizing
awareness camps, meetings, conducting competitions and screening
documentaries are the common techniques adopted by all the groups to
perform their tasks and realize their goals.
The first group aims at giving environmental education, advocating
sanitation and smokeless brick kilns. The second group makes a
survey of health problems and gives required guidance. The third
group propagates literacy programmes, non-formal education,
readmitting dropouts and encouraging people to watch educational
The fourth group forms Youth Club, Women’s Club and ‘Sangams’.
They also organize meetings for agricultural labourers and masons and
supportive workers. The fifth group focuses on the application of
knowledge acquired by students in their respective subjects to the
people in the adopted villages. The sixth group liaises with different
Government Agencies like District Rural Development Agency, Social
Welfare Board, Block Development Office, Panchayat Union Office
and Transport Corporation to get their needs fulfilled.
Each department executes its plan according to the nature and
convenience of its resources. The highlights of the work done by the
departments are as follows:
Students of Tamil discipline conduct awareness programmes through
street plays and dramas and programme to develop reading and writing
skills of the school children. Students of English discipline teach
Communicative Skills in English, conduct language games to school
children and teach them the uses of mass media. Students of History
highlight the social issues of the villages and the country at large and
instill patriotism to promote peace and harmony in the nation.
Students of Mathematics explain the motion of the planets using
astronomical models to school children and train them in various bank
transactions. Students of Physics give training in electric and
electronic tools to school children. Students of Chemistry educate in
food analysis, soil water analysis, create awareness of pollutions and
impart skills for making candles, soap, phenoyl, cosmetics and herbal

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Students of Zoology create awareness of the causes of diseases,

suggest preventive measures to promote health and hygiene and
provide tips for nature conservation. Students of Computer Science
impart a sound knowledge of computer applications to youngsters to
cater to the present needs of the society.
Students of Commerce teach skills on handicrafts and develop
entrepreneurial skills of the people. Students of Commerce (C.A.)
take the schemes of LIC and banks for savings / loans to the people
and educate them in promoting savings, repaying loans and
maintaining accounts. Students of Business Administration teach
marketing strategies and the rights and duties of consumers.
Consolidated report of all the activities are submitted at the end of V
semester and one credit is awarded for it.
Figure 7.1. JACEP-Community Services

Evidence of Success
Provide evidence of success such as performance against targets
and benchmarks, review results. What do these results indicate?
Describe in about 200 words.
Training programmes have been arranged to improve the skills of rural
women for gainful employment. Awareness programmes are
conducted for the marginalized women for their empowerment.

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Outcome (Target Groups)

The services of JACEP have yielded satisfactory results to various
disciplines as fruits of their hard labour and selfless service. The
outcome of the outstanding performances of JACEP is highlighted
 Created good rapport with the village leaders and the people
 Enriched the teaching and learning processes in schools by using
Audio Visual Aids
 Imparted social and moral values
 Helped to create healthy and pollution - free villages
 Created opportunity for sharing the knowledge and experience of
the senior citizens
 Enabled people to avail the Government Welfare schemes like
widow’s pension, Voters ID, ID for the differently-abled etc.
 Given awareness of fatal diseases like AIDS and T.B.
 Tackled health hazards by maintaining good health and hygiene
 Eradicated illiteracy by encouraging the school dropouts for
readmission at schools
Outcome (Students)
The students engaged in JACEP enjoy rich rewards of social service as
it enriches their personality.
 They have been exposed to social problems.
 They have been aware of their responsibilities and commitment to
the society.
 The peer group relationship has been improved.
 The volunteers have acted as instruments in bringing about social
Noteworthy highlights
The following are some of the awareness programmes conducted by
 A two day workshop on Rural Youth towards Dawn on 22nd and
23rd November, 2010.
 A one day Seminar for the Farmers in Theni District on 19th
January, 2011.
 A two day workshop on Entrepreneurial Development for Women
on 13th and14th December, 2011.

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5. Problems encountered and resources required

Please identify the problems encountered and resources required
to implement the practice (in about 150 words).

JACEP has found the public reluctant to involve themselves in the

extension activities proposed by the college because of inadequacy of
time and the necessity to earn their livelihood through hard labour.
Exhaustion and lack of interest are the major impediments for their
inability to participate in the welfare activities.

Lack of proper roads and transport has caused many inconveniences to

reach the adopted villages. JACEP has made recommendations for
Mini Bus Services to rectify this problem.

Inadequate water facilities and means of accommodation have posed a

great challenge to hold meetings for the children and the public
frequently especially in rainy and summer seasons.

Efforts have also been taken to solve these problems by representing

them to the Panchayat Presidents and the officials concerned.
Best Practice - II

The main focus of the higher education in India is to promote research.

In accordance with the growing need for the upgradation of the faculty
and the students in higher education, enormous efforts are taken by the
management of the college to inculcate research culture in the staff and
the students to arouse curiosity, develop objectivity and improve
critical thinking.

It ensures continuous professional growth on the part of teachers and

of problem identifying, systematic planning, careful implementing and
solution finding abilities on the part of students. Research Committee
in the college takes initiatives for all activities related to research.
1. Title of the Practice
Promotion of Research
2. Objectives of the Practice
What are the objectives/ intended outcomes of this ‘‘best practice’’
and what are the underlying principles or concepts of this practice
(in about 100 words)?

• To keep pace with the relentless wheel of change and update the
intellectual calibre of the faculty
• To encourage the faculty to pursue Ph.D.

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• To acquire guideship to produce more research scholars

• To motivate the faculty to apply for the major and minor research
projects by providing guidelines and details of funding agencies
• To fulfill the requirements to promote the research departments into
research centres
• To collaborate with other institutions and universities in and abroad
• To arrange for interface among the institutions, industries and the
public to take up research projects relevant for the present day
• To encourage the faculty and the students to organize and present
research papers in the national / international seminars / conferences /
• To publish quality research articles in reputed journals, edit study
materials for the prescribed syllabus and author books of high
• To provide seed money for research activities
• To take steps for publishing a Research Journal

3. The Context
What are the contextual features or challenging issues that needed
to be addressed in designing and implementing this practice (in
about 150 words)?

Since constant updating of the subject is very essential to try the

untrodden paths, the teaching staff of the college are highly conscious
of quality enhancement and quality sustenance on par with the progress
of technology in keeping with other autonomous institutions.

The College generates knowledge for dissemination and so its main

focus is on quality research. It has created a research ambience through
strengthening infrastructure facilities, motivating staff members and
guiding them to acquire grants from the funding agencies to launch on
research undertakings - pursuing Ph.D., taking up minor or major
research projects, guiding research scholars and publishing research
papers and books.
Challenging issues to be addressed while designing and
implementing the practice
 The great demand of the rural based students for the attention of the
staff to cope with their studies
 Requiring sound knowledge of technology development

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 Creation of awareness on the need for research to update the

knowledge of the students and the staff at international standards
 Creating an interest in research in students through individual or group
research projects as part of their syllabus
 Analyzing and addressing the needs of the society through JACEP and
submitting reports based on their field research
 Forming linkage with the industries and research centres and
collaborating with them for the research projects of staff and students.

4. The Practice
Describe the practice and its uniqueness in the context of Indian
higher education. What were the constraints/ limitations, if any,
faced (in about 400 words)?
The institution provides opportunities to the faculty to do Ph. D. under
FIP or Part Time research privately. The College also motivates for
doing major and minor projects through UGC and other funding
A Research Committee under the Chairmanship of the Principal
actively involves in promoting research culture among the staff and
students in the campus. It sets the target for achievement in the action
plan presented and submitted in the Planning and Evaluation
Committee meeting every year. The attainment of the target is
reviewed at the end of the academic year.

Support facilities for research

 Special consideration in the form of leave is given to the staff who are
on the verge of completing their research work.
 The visits to various Universities and libraries for data collection have
enriched their research.
 The management extends co-operation to the staff to go abroad for
paper presentation and send proposals to UGC to avail travel grant.
 Steps have been taken to have a linkage with Liverpool Hope
University, U.K. to promote teaching, learning and research.
 The management has decided to give financial assistance to the self-
finance faculty who make research publications in the journals with
high impact factor.
 Rewards of teachers are based on their achievements in research.

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Constraints faced in the pursuit of research

 Owing to time constraint and interface, the gap between academia and
industries is not adequately bridged to fulfill the needs of industries.
 The students can be further motivated to explore new areas of research
and procure funds from various funding agencies.
 Students can be provided hands-on activity based research in the
industries to address challenges faced in the job market.
 Extension Programme can focus on neighbourhood oriented research
to solve real life problems.
 Interdisciplinary and socio- economic developmental research can be
encouraged among the students and the teachers.
 Ph.D. holders can be motivated to publicize their research in the form
of books.

5. Evidence of Success
Provide evidence of success such as performance against targets
and benchmarks, review results. What do these results indicate?
Describe in about 200 words.
The achievements in the field of research are the main indicators of
excellence in research practiced at the college.
 Recently twenty two staff members have successfully defended their
doctoral degrees in different Universities. A good number of staff have
availed the opportunities for presenting papers and publishing articles
and books. 9 Minor and 6 Major Research Projects are undertaken
during the assessment period. 11staff members are University-
approved supervisors for guiding M.Phil. and Ph.D. scholars. Final
year UG and PG students undertake mandatory and funded, individual
and group projects. BSR Laboratory and Wet Laboratory have been
established for research activities
 Two Research Departments have been elevated into Research Centers.
 E-journals, INFLIBNET and Internet laboratory are added in the
 Additional Internet laboratory has been established for the hostel
 Publication of research papers in reputed journals with high impact
factor evinces the keen interest of the faculty in research.
 Competitive grants have been won by the Principal investigators for
minor and major research projects.

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 The publication of Ph.D. theses of two faculty members as books has

won wide acclaim.
 Research is nurtured at the college by strengthening infrastructure
facilities in the laboratories and the library.

6. Problems Encountered and Resources Required

Please identify the problems encountered and resources required
to implement the practice (in about 150 words).
 More incentives can be given to the teachers by the Government for
research activities - publications of books and papers in reputed
 Refresher Courses can groom teachers to take up research projects.
 Conferences and seminars can be organized for the teachers and the
students to create awareness of the requirements for research -
preparation of proposals, various funding agencies etc.
 General grants can be provided by UGC under special schemes to
strengthen research resources at the college in the form of books and
 International collaboration and co-operation can be sought to make
research more qualitative.
 Approved study leave can be sanctioned for minor and major research
 A research journal can be published by maintaining the standard of the
articles and making the peer review process strict.
 Academic audit can formulate quality parameters to ascertain the
quality of research of the staff and the students in each department.
 Vacancies can be filled up by the Government to acquire powerful
human resource with research acumen to develop research activities.
Any additional information regarding Innovations and Best
Practices, which the College would like to include.
 Family Day and St. Anne’s Feast are blissful occasions when the
management hosts a dinner and share pleasant moments with the staff.
 The institution is running a Crèche free-of-cost.
 Daily prayer through public addressing system.
 Inter-faith dialogue is conducted every year.
 Holistic development for all the students and faculties.

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