Higher Education in India: Standards, Basic Challenges

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Higher Education in India

Higher education plays an imperative role in helping you actualise your career aspirations. With thousands of options to explore around the world in terms of courses, institutions and study destinations, it is vital for an individual completing their secondary education to weigh in their interests and career goals and decide the right programme to take a step towards tertiary education. All those who are willing to pursue higher education in India must take the decision judiciously as it comes with its own set of pros and cons. This blog brings a detailed analysis of the Indian Higher Education system, its distinguishing features and how it can be improved.

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Basic Standards of Education 

The current education system of India incorporates a generalised and normalised approach to learning which may equip you with a foundational knowledge of your field but if you are willing to delve deeper into a domain it might not be the best platform. When compared with the best education systems of top study destinations like the US and the UK, the Indian higher education landscape is still far behind and this is why scores of students opt to study abroad to gain more exposure in their field of interests. On the other hand, the most popular degrees for pursuing Higher Education in India are either in the field of Engineering, Management or Medical Science which international academic institutions offer a multitude of interdisciplinary and specialised programs ranging from Artificial Intelligence and data Science to Fashion Technology, Textile Design, Aviation, Biotechnology, amongst others. 

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Higher Education in India: Types of Universities

There are four types of universities established in the country of India.

  1. Central Universities: Established and Funded by the central government.
  2. State Universities: Funded and operated by the state government(s).
  3. Private Universities: Specialised institutions and research universities operated by private stakeholders.
  4. Deemed Universities: Equal standing to the Central Universities on advice from the Union Grants Commission (UGC).


Infrastructure is another important parameter to consider whether you are exploring the best universities to pursue higher education in India or abroad. You may receive worthy education in the country but due to lack of funds, the inappropriate infrastructure may act as a hurdle in pursuing higher education in India. While many top academic institutions in India are renowned for their state-of-the-art infrastructure, some many universities and institutes lack the best infrastructure and facilities to provide a holistic learning environment for their students. There are many Indian universities, especially public universities, that lack the right teaching equipment, high-end classrooms as well and basic amenities on the campus for their students. While the Indian higher education landscape has witnessed tremendous growth in terms of the number of universities and institutes, poor infrastructure still stands as a strong challenge to tackle.

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Higher Education in India: Core Fields of Study

The distinction between the core fields of study that are divided amongst STEM and non-STEM courses are tabulated below.

STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics)Non-STEM
Chemical engineering.
Computer science.
Civil engineering.
Aerospace engineering.
Information technology
— and more.


Business Management
, etc.

Higher Education in India: Average Faculty 

Experienced and learned mentors and teachers play a crucial role in facilitating quality education. Another important challenge encountered by students pursuing higher education in India is the shortage of faculty as well as the absence of well-qualified and experienced teachers in universities and colleges. This has been a consistent problem for the last few decades as academic institutions face problems either with finding the right faculty for every academic department or with retaining well-qualified teachers. On the other hand, the distinguishing feature of pursuing overseas education is that global universities offer best-in-class industry experts, Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and international faculty. 

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Higher Education in India: Theory-Based Curriculum

The prominent public universities delivering higher education in India generally focus on a theory-based curriculum that incorporates less scope for a student to gain practical exposure. To beat today’s cut-throat competition, individuals must focus more on practical learning and skill development. On the other hand, the top universities in the world offer immense practical exposure coupled with flexibility in course structure as well as implementing curriculums designed by industry experts. Thus, there is a dire need for Indian academic institutions to design industry-based curriculums which will potentially help in tackling the lower employability of Indian students. 

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Higher Education in India: Regulatory Bodies

Higher education in India is mainly overseen by two major regulatory bodies, which are mentioned below.


It performs tasks such as providing funds, establishing standards, analysing the growth of the universities, and more. The criteria set by UGC is the must-to-follow procedure for the universities.


The technical education of India is overseen by AICTE which it plans, coordinates, and develops the

Research Exposure

If you aim to pursue research-oriented fields of study, then the prospective academic opportunities for higher education in India might pose a greater challenge for you to delve deeper into your chosen field of study. Most of the universities and colleges in India tackle the issue of facilitating adequate research exposure for their students which needs to be incorporated not only for postgraduate programmes but also for undergraduate courses to ensure a stronger foundation for students interested in exploring a research career. When compared with academic institutions abroad, there is a multitude of programs on offer which are equipped with research-oriented curriculums and offer immense exposure for every student to explore their field of interest in a wholesome manner.

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When was higher education introduced in India?

According to reports, higher education was first introduced in 1857.

What is the concept of higher education in India?

Some of the basic aims of higher education in India are greater access, quality and excellence, and equal access. It enables the personal growth, social and infrastructural development of the country.

What are the basic challenges in higher education in India?

Faculty shortage and infrastructure are some of the challenges of higher education in India.

Thus, we hope that this blog about higher education in India has provided a clear insight into the academic landscape of our country and its present challenges. Sceptical about pursuing higher education abroad? Book a free online career counselling session with Leverage Edu experts and let us assist you in picking the right programme and university to begin the next phase of your academic journey!

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