Engineering education in India

From Bharatpedia, an open encyclopedia

India has the largest numbers of engineers as well as the largest number of engineering education institutes and infrastructure in the world. In 2021, India annually produces one million engineering graduates, has 3500 engineering colleges, 3400 polytechnics, and 200 schools of planning and architecture, and many times more Industrial training institute.[1] Combination of these impart undergraduate and graduate courses in architecture, engineering, applied engineering and sciences.[2]

Of the 1 million engineering graduates produced every year, less than 10% of the engineers are produced by the pan-India national level autonomous institutes created by the acts of parliament, such as the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), National Institutes of Technology (NITs), Indian Institutes of Information Technology(IIITs)[1][3]and private deemed universities such as Birla Institute of Technology and Science Pilani, Vellore Institute of Technology and International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad. The remaining over 90% of the engineering graduates are produced by the non-autonomous state level engineering education institutes which must obtain the approval from the regulatory authority All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to run such courses before they start admitting students.[2]


There is long history of science and technology in the Indian subcontinent. The western style engineering education commenced during the British raj as a necessity for the training of overseers for construction and maintenance of public buildings, roads, canals, and ports, and for the training of artisans and craftsmen for the use of instruments, and apparatus needed for the army, the navy, and the survey department. While superintending engineers were mostly recruited from Britain, lower grade craftsmen, artisans and sub-overseers were recruited locally. The necessity to make them more efficient, led to the establishment of industrial schools attached to the Ordnance Factories Board and other engineering establishments.[4]

In 1847, India's the first engineering college Thomason College of Civil Engineering (now called IIT Roorkee) was established at Roorkee in present day Uttarakhand state for the training of Civil Engineers. It was followed by College of Engineering, Pune's precursor, The Poona Engineering Class and Mechanical School in July 1854.[5]

Legal and regulatory framework[edit]

Universities and institutes deemed to be universities are approved by the University Grants Commission. In 2021, there are nearly 900 government and universities and 45,000 colleges affiliated to these universities.[2]

All institutes, universities engineering colleges as well as government or privately funded engineering colleges affiliated to the universities, must obtain an approval from the AICTE which licenses and regulates the institutes, not the individuals or practitioners, which offer the engineering and/or technical education. IITs, IIITs and NITs, etc do not require approval from UGC or AICTE as these are created as the autonomous organisations through the act of parliament, hence they have full autonomy to decide their teaching standards, course design, curriculum, fee, etc.[2] Engineering colleges run by the Central Universities, which were not created as the autonomous institutes along the lines of IITs, IIITs or NITs, must also seek AICTE approval.

Pan-India or national level institutes[edit]

These are either founded and funded or approved by the Union Government of India. This mainly includes IITs, NITs, IIITs, etc.

Indian Institutes of Technology[edit]

The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) has 23 centers located in Bhubaneswar, Bombay, Delhi, Gandhinagar, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Indore, Jodhpur, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Madras, Mandi, Patna, Roorkee, Ropar, Dhanbad, Palakkad, Tirupati, Bhilai, Goa, Jammu, Dharwad and Varanasi. All IITs enjoy the status of the Institutes of National Importance and are autonomous universities that draft their own curricula. Many IITs are members of LAOTSE, an international network of universities in Europe and Asia. LAOTSE membership allows the IITs to exchange students and senior scholars with universities in other countries.

Admission to undergraduate B.Tech and integrated M.Tech programs are through JEE Advanced (the Joint Entrance Examination Advanced) in which around 150,000 students appear annually out of which only around 16,000[6] get selected. These 150,000 students are initially sorted out by the JEE Mains (Joint Entrance Examination Mains) which is conducted by the NTA (National Testing Agency). Around 1.2 million students appear for this exam. Admission to most postgraduate courses in IITs is granted through various written entrance examinations: GATE (for M.Tech.), JAM (for M.Sc.) and CEED (for M.Des.). The admission for Ph.D. program is based primarily on a personal interview, though candidates may also have to appear for written tests. The IITs are also well known for their special reservation policy, which is significantly different from the one applied in other educational institutions of India.[7]

National Institutes of Technology[edit]

The National Institutes of Technology (NITs) are colleges of engineering and technology education in India. All NITs enjoy the status of the Institutes of National Importance and are autonomous universities that draft their own curricula. They were originally called Regional Engineering Colleges (RECs). In 2002, the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India, decided to upgrade, in phases, all the original 17 RECs as NITs. There are currently 31 NITs, with the inception of 10 new NITs in the year 2010 and another in 2015. The 31 NITs are located in Allahabad, Agartala, Bhopal, Durgapur, Hamirpur, Kozhikode, Kurukshetra, Jalandhar, Jamshedpur, Jaipur, Nagpur, Patna, Raipur, Rourkela, Silchar, Srinagar, Surathkal, Surat, Tiruchirappalli, Warangal, Yupia, New Delhi, Farmagudi, Imphal, Shillong, Aizawl, Dimapur, Karaikal, Ravangla, Srinagar and Tadepalligudem. The Government of India has introduced the National Institutes of Technology (NIT) Act 2010 to bring 31 such institutions within the ambit of the act and to provide them with complete autonomy in their functioning. The NITs are deliberately scattered throughout the country in line with the government norm of an NIT in every major state of India to promote regional development. The individual NITs, after the introduction of the NIT Act, have been functioning as autonomous technical universities and hence can draft their own curriculum and functioning policies.[8] The admission to undergraduate programs of all the NITs was done by the All India Engineering Entrance Examination[9] popularly known as AIEEE. From the year 2013, AIEEE was replaced by JEE-Main (Joint Entrance Examination - Main) in which 40% weightage was given to the Higher Secondary results and 60% weightage was given to the JEE(Main) results. However, the weightage of Higher Secondary result was made to be 0% from the year 2017 onwards and it was only given as an eligibility criteria (of either attaining 75% in HS results or being in the top 20% of the respective board). The examination is objective by nature and is conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA)[10] from the year 2019. The exam was previously conducted by CBSE. More than fourteen lakh(1,400,000) applicants took part in 2013 for approximately 15500 seats in the B. Tech and B. Arch programmes available in all the NITs put together.[11]

Other Central technical Institutions[edit]

There are more than 25 Government Funded Technical Institutes and 25 Indian Institutes of Information Technology in addition to IITs and NITs. They also follow similar academic and admission policies of IITs and NITs.[12]

Private Deemed Universities[edit]

Various notable private deemed universites like Birla Institute of Technology and Science Pilani, International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad,Vellore Institute of Technology are known to produce excellent engineering graduates in India in par with top IITs and NITs. Students in these universities rank fairly high in various international engineering competitions organised by Google, ACM, IEEE, ASME and many others. Admission to top Deemed-universities are competitive as IITs and NITs. Admission to most technical and Science courses in these Institutes is done through national-level common entrance examinations like Joint Entrance Examination – Main for undergraduate B.Tech, B.Arch, B.Plan, Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering(GATE) for postgraduate M.Tech, M.Arch and Joint Admission Test for M.Sc.(IIT-JAM) for postgraduate M.Sc, M.S. The admission for Ph.D. program is based primarily on a personal interview, though candidates may also have to appear for written tests. For Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani admission to the undergraduate programme is based on BITSAT and for Vellore Institute of Technology through VITEEE .

Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad, LNM Institute of Information Technology, Amrita Schools of Engineering-Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Vellore Institute of Technology, Manipal Institute of Technology and Thapar Institute of Engineering and Technology are some of top private Deemed universities in the country.[13] Admission to these Insitutes is based purely on merit and these is an absence of special social reservation policy. The curriculum here is also more updated and flexible than public Universities.

The Institution of Engineers (India)[edit]

AMIE was established in 1920 in Kolkata, West Bengal and is acclaimed to have pioneered education in Engineering. IEI (I) conducts an examination for its Associate Membership(AMIE). This examination is considered as B.E. / B.Tech when contemplated as o write competitive examinations like the Indian Civil Service, Indian Engineering Services, GATE, etc., and for employment in Government, public and private sectors in India. This qualification is recognised by Ministry of HRD, Government of India as equivalent to B.E./ B.Tech.

There are 2 sections, namely Section A and Section B, who passed both of section he will be chartered engineer(CEng), chartered engineer(CEng) is considered as bachelor's degree in all National and International bodies.

As per AICTE, AMIE is recognized as equivalent to bachelor's degree in appropriate branch of engineering, to those who had enrolled themselves with the institution on or before 31 May 2013. Refer notification from AICTE website.[14]

State-level institutes by the state[edit]

As of 2021, India has 28 states each with own government elected separately from the national government (also called union or federal government), and 8 union territories which are administered by the union government. Each state can find and fund own state level technical education institutes and it can also approve such institutes in the private sector, both of these legally remained confined to the specific state within and by which they were created. All these institutes must also obtain AICTE approval for conformation to the engineering and technology education teaching infrastructure and minimum standards.

List of AICTE approved institutes by state, for the academic year 2017-2018:Template:Doubtful

S.No State/Union Territory Number of Engineering Institutes[15] Comments
1 Andaman & Nicobar Islands 1
2 Andhra Pradesh 149
3 Arunachal Pradesh 24
4 Assam 37
5 Bihar 107
6 Chandigarh 14
7 Chhattisgarh 73
8 Dadra and Nagar Haveli 3
9 Daman and Diu 2
10 Delhi 56
11 Goa 17
12 Gujarat 197
13 Haryana 226 See also List of institutions of higher education in Haryana
14 Himachal Pradesh 64
15 Jammu and Kashmir 53
16 Jharkhand 73
17 Karnataka 157
18 Kerala 129
19 Madhya Pradesh 241
20 Maharashtra 334
21 Manipur 4
22 Meghalaya 7
23 Mizoram 4
24 Nagaland 8
25 Odisha 242
26 Puducherry 29
27 Punjab 302
28 Rajasthan 281
29 Sikkim 5
30 Tamil Nadu 314
31 Telangana 253
32 Tripura 13
33 Uttar Pradesh 574
34 Uttarakhand 117
35 West Bengal 172
- Total 4282


Illegal capitation fee[edit]

Some of the engineering colleges have been known for involving themselves in the illegal practice of capitation fee. All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), the regulatory body for technical education in India, has called "upon the students, parents and the general public not to pay any capitation fee or any other fee other than that mentioned in the Prospectus of the Institutions for consideration of admission.".[16] AICTE also mentions that the fee charged from students, has to be approved by the fee regulatory committee of the state, and the institute should mention the fee in its website.[17] As per AICTE norms, the educational institutions are not meant to charge a fee higher than what is mentioned in the prospectus. Educational regulatory agencies such as UGC[18] and regional level fee regulating bodies[19] has mandated that an institution should include the fee in the prospectus.

See also[edit]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "National Institutes of Technology". Retrieved 2020-05-16.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Modi govt’s HEC can’t just be UGC with new label. Engineering still needs its own regulator, The Print, 3 Feb 2021.
  3. "Indian Institutes of Technology". Retrieved 2020-05-16.
  5. "History of COEP".
  6. "More dreams get wings as IITs to add 460 seats this year".
  7. "IITs | Technical Education | Government of India, Ministry of Human Resource Development". Retrieved 2019-04-05.
  8. "Technical Education | Government of India,of Human Resource Development". Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  9. "List of Engineering Entrance Exams". Etoosindia. Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  10. Misra, Aishwarya (2018-04-14). "Establishment of the NTA: Purpose, Organization, Features". EduPadhai. Retrieved 2019-04-22.
  11. "NITs | Technical Education | Government of India, Ministry of Human Resource Development". Retrieved 2019-04-05.
  12. "JoSAA". Retrieved 2021-07-06.
  13. "MoE, National Institute Ranking Framework (NIRF)". Retrieved 2021-07-06.
  14. "Public Notice for Professional Bodies/Institutes Imparting Technical Education | Government of India, All India Council for Technical Education". Retrieved 2021-03-16.
  15. "List of AICTE approved Institutes for the academic year: 2017-2018". AICTE. Archived from the original on 10 June 2017. Retrieved 2 July 2017.
  17. "All India Council for Technical Education" (PDF). Retrieved 17 September 2016.
  18. "Deemed Regulation- The Gazette of India" (PDF). Retrieved 17 September 2016.
  19. "MBA Directives issued to all All Self-Financing Management Institutes on 11-05-2015" (PDF). Retrieved 17 September 2016.
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