Education in Karnataka

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Statue of the founder of Indian Institute of Science, J N Tata

The state of Karnataka in India has institutions like the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Indian Institute of Technology, Dharwad (IIT,DWD) Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Kanarese Institute of Applied Sciences (KIAS), the National Institute of Technology Karnataka (NITK), Indian Institute of Information Technology, Dharwad (IIIT), International Institute of Information Technology, Bangalore, Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU) and the National Law School of India University. In addition, a Visvesvaraya Institute of Advanced Technology (VIAT) is being constructed in Muddenahalli.[1]

As per the 2011 census, Karnataka has a literacy rate of 75.36% with 82.47% of males and 68.08% of females being literate.[2]

Primary and secondary education[edit]

Pramati Hillview Academy, Mysore

As of March 2006, Karnataka had 54,529 primary schools with 252,875 teachers and 8.495 million students.[3] Likewise, there are 9,499 secondary schools with 92,287 teachers with 1.384 million students.[3]

There are three kinds of schools in Karnataka: government (run by the government), aided (financial aid is provided by the government), and unaided private (no financial aid is provided). In majority of these schools, the medium of instruction is either English or Kannada. The syllabus taught in the schools is that of CBSE, ICSE, NIOS, or the state syllabus (defined by the Department of Public Instruction of the Government of Karnataka).[4] The curriculum includes subjects like science, social studies and mathematics apart from language-related subjects. To maximize attendance, the Karnataka Government has launched a midday meal scheme in government and aided schools in which free lunch is provided to the students.[5]

At the end of secondary education, the students pursuing the state syllabus have to pass an examination called the Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC) to move on to the next level. The SSLC is administered by the Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board.[6]

Pre-university education[edit]

Students who have passed the SSLC have to pursue a two-year pre-university course (PUC) or a three-year diploma course before they are granted admission to a degree (baccalaureate) college. In the pre-university course, the student has to choose one among the three streams of Arts, Commerce, and Science depending on the kind of degree the student wants to pursue later.[7] The Arts stream includes subjects like History, Sociology and Political Science; the Commerce stream includes subjects like Accountancy, Economics and Business Mathematics; and the Science stream includes subjects like Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Biology, Electronics and computer science.

International schools and certification boards[edit]

Bengaluru is a city that caters to the needs of prospective parents seeking international education for their children.[citation needed] Bengaluru has evolved into a global education hub[citation needed] due to its cosmopolitan residents. Most of the international schools follow IB (international baccalaureate, Geneva) or Cambridge (Cambridge International Examinations, Britain) curricula. (The ICSE and CBSE are the curricula followed by most of the Indian schools in Karnataka.)

These international schools focus more on holistic education and inquiry-based learning for their students than just focusing on rote learning.

Baccalaureate education[edit]

National Institute of Technology (NITK), Surathkal in Mangaluru — one of the premier engineering colleges in Karnataka
Manipal Institute of Technology, Manipal

There are 481 degree colleges that are run under the jurisdiction of the universities in the state — Bangalore University, Kuvempu University, Mysore University, Mangalore University, Gulbarga University, and Karnatak University.[8] Deemed universities such as Christ University, Manipal University also exist. Apart from these, there is the Visvesvaraya Technological University which oversees many of the engineering colleges in the state.

The medical colleges in the state are run under the jurisdiction of the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences. Some of these baccalaureate colleges are accredited with the status of a deemed university which grants them independence in chalking out their own syllabus and awarding degrees on their own. There are 123 engineering, 35 medical, and 40 dental colleges in the state.[9]

The state has four universities offering courses related to agriculture:University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad, University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, University of Agricultural Sciences, Raichur and University of Agricultural and Horticultural Sciences, Shimoga. The state has set up a Karnataka Veterinary, Animal and Fisheries Sciences University at Bidar.

Other universities established by the state government are Kannada University, Karnataka State Open University, and Karnataka State Women's University.

Technical education[edit]

The first engineering college (University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering, UVCE) in Karnataka was started by the then Diwan of Mysore Sir M. Visvesvaraya in 1917 in Bengaluru. It was the fifth engineering college to be started in the country.[10] By 1956, Karnataka had two Government and three private engineering colleges in the state.[citation needed]


  1. "An emerging educational hub". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 7 September 2009. Archived from the original on 22 January 2011.
  2. "Literacy in Karnataka". Census India. Retrieved 14 July 2016.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Number of schools in Karnataka as of 31-03-2006" (PDF). Online webpage of the Department of Public Instruction. Government of Karnataka. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  4. "Only State syllabus students can participate in DPI sports meet". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 31 August 2006. Archived from the original on 1 October 2007. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  5. "Mid-day meal scheme extended". The Times of India. 16 May 2007. Archived from the original on 11 August 2011. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  6. "About Us". Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
  7. "Students, parents throng PU colleges in city". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 16 May 2006. Archived from the original on 13 May 2007. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  8. "Districtwise and Universitywise degree college statistics for 2006-07" (PDF). Online webpage of the Department of Collegiate Education. Government of Karnataka. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  9. "CET brochure 2009" (PDF). Online webpage of the Common Entrance Test Cell. Government of Karnataka. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  10. "UVCE plans year-long celebrations". Deccan Herald. 13 September 2010. Retrieved 16 December 2010.