UGC increases rates of guest faculty honorarium

Pranita Roy
Sunday, 3 February 2019

“Guest faculty should be appointed only against a sanctioned post. In case of universities where the sanctioned posts are not adequate as per the teaching workload, then the number of guest faculty can be appointed up to 20 per cent over and above the sanctioned post,” read the UGC notice.

PUNE: In a welcome move for experts and lecturers working as guest faculties, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has revised the guidelines of rates of ‘guest faculty honorarium’ in universities and colleges from Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,500 with Rs 50,000 being the maximum they can be paid in a month. 

“Guest faculty should be appointed only against a sanctioned post. In case of universities where the sanctioned posts are not adequate as per the teaching workload, then the number of guest faculty can be appointed up to 20 per cent over and above the sanctioned post,” read the UGC notice.

Also, the qualification for guest faculty will be similar to of those prescribed for regular assistant professors of universities and colleges as per UGC. It has also mentioned that superannuated teachers can also be considered as guest faculties, but the maximum age limit stands to 70 years.

“This will encourage senior teachers, industry experts and professionals to contribute in teaching at educational institutes. However, the decision needs to be endorsed by the State government as well,” said Prafulla Pawar, Registrar of Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU).

BURNING QUESTION
However, sources have stated that there are lakhs of teachers who are working on clock hour basis and according to the State government, they are paid around Rs 350-700, when UGC had instructed to pay Rs 1,000. Hence if Rs 1,500 has been announced for guest faculty, how much will be given remains a question.

“Professional courses have guest faculties from industries to provide industry knowledge. Departments like journalism and mass communication have limited resource, like for animation, we need experts from industry to take few classes,” said Madhavi Reddy, Head of Department of Professors and Head of Department of Media and Communication Studies, SPPU.

“It has always been demanded to raise the remuneration for guest faculties, as it would become difficult to convince an industry expert to take special classes, due to less money being given. Hence, in that way, it is a good decision,” she said.

POINT OF CONCERN
“But this also alerts me on another level that there are chances that administration may promote to get faculties on ad-hoc or clock hour basis only. It can hamper the recruitment process for permanent vacancies. However, payments of regular faculties are annually revised, so even guest faculties should be,” added Reddy.

PS Lawande, General Secretary of Maharashtra Federation of University and College Teachers’ Organisation (MFUCTO) expressed a similar concern. “It is good that remuneration for guest faculties has been increased, but taking advantage of this, few educational institutes will only hire guest faculties and not fill up permanent teaching posts,” said Lawande.

”The basic concept to get guest faculties or industry experts, especially for professional courses, is to provide industrial guidance and avail expertiese in a particular subject or topic. It shouldn’t be generalised and regular faculty recruitment shouldn’t be affected. Also, guest faculties are not available full-time for students to clear doubts or queries,” said Lawande.

QUALIFICATION FOR GUEST FACULTY
- Guest faculty should be appointed against sanctioned post 
- Qualification for guest faculty will be similar to regular assistant professors as per UGC
- Superannuated teachers can be considered as guest faculty, but age limit is 70 years

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