UGC-Colleges with Potential
for Excellence (CPE)
Report of the UGC Review
Committee in connection with CPE status - May 2008
The observation of the Committee
are as follows:
- St. Xavier’s College is one of the oldest colleges in
the country and was established in the year 1860. The
college is located in the heart of the city of Kolkata.
- The college is housed in a 5 storey-building
encompassing 6 acres of land. The atmosphere is
invigorating and full of activities.
- The college is affiliated to the Calcutta University
and, in fact, is the first college to get autonomy in the
State of West Bengal. The college has been accredited by
NACC in the year 2003, with ‘A’ grade.
- The college has at the present 5 UG and 2 PG
departments. It offers 7 programmes in the faculty of arts
(B.A. Honours - English (50); Political Science (50);
Sociology (50); B.A. General (30); each of History,
Bengali and Hindi). It also offers 8 programmes in the
faculty of science (B.Sc. Honours (Physics (35), Chemistry
(35), Mathematics (50), Statistics (30), Economics (50),
Computer Science (35), Microbiology (35), Mass
Communications (35); B.Sc. General (35); B.Com Honours
(800), B.Com General (250); B.B.A (60); B.Ed. (100).
- The college also runs PG Courses; namely, M.Sc.
(Computer Sc.) (35); M.Sc. (Physics) (16); M.Com. (45);
M.Sc. (Integrated Biotech.) (35).
- The college has collaborated with other universities
and offers the following courses: 3-year B.Sc. (Animation)
(50) in collaboration with Karnataka State Open University
(KSOU) (through MOU with toonskool); 2-years M.S. (MOU
with Mysore University and IBM, which is extended to 4
years to recruit students by IBM) (50).
- The college has 100 members of permanent faculty in
various cadres. It is gratifying to note that 31 teachers
have doctoral degrees.
- In addition, the college has employed 50 part-time
faculties to cater to special courses.
- There are 53 non-teaching staff to look after
administration, finances and academic work.
- The college has student strength of over 5000 as of
- The college has a very vibrant alumni association and
the Committee had the pleasure of meeting some of them.
The alumni have excelled in all walks of life and include
some of the most illustrious Indians.
- The Department of Physics and Statistics have done
remarkably well in developing new well-equipped
laboratories to support the programmes which they have
undertaken. Both the departments are identified for
research. The labs have been totally renovated. They have
also an observatory. New books to the physics library are
added through CPE funds. More than 300 computers all
connected through Intra-net are in place, with broadband
facilities for 40 computers. Part of funds is utilized for
library and general labs. All 9 teachers of the Physics
Department are Ph.D.s and have published 6 papers in
international reputed journals.
- In the Department of Statistics, most of the teaching
is done through the use of computers and multimedia. The
labs are fully equipped. Part of finances has come from
the CPE funds. The teachers have taken web-enabled
teaching. Out of 6 faculty members, 2 are doctorates.
- The college has applied for distance learning courses
through IGNOU such as (a) Enhanced Access Programmes (b)
Value Added Programmes.
- Department of Biotechnology of the college has also
initiated a new 5-year Integrated M.Sc. course in
biotechnology and also has made plans for a course in
- The college has planned for e-based academic reforms,
database on all students, and made a plan for
Entrepreneurial Resource Planning (ERP).
- The Department of Chemistry has also been well
equipped partly through the CPE funds and mainly through
their own resources.
- A lot of student’s magazines have been published by
the BBA, science and humanities departments of the
college, which include environmental studies, modern
trends in microbiology, etc.
- The college has planned to conduct a 3-day seminar on
‘Healthy Corporate Practices’ in October 2008 and a 3-day
workshop on ‘Counseling and Personality Development’ in
- A number of foreign universities have visited the
college to explore possibilities on collaboration in
different areas including space studies. In the recent
past, representatives of University of Manitoba, Canada;
University Sogang, Korea, and Le Cole Polytechnique,
Paris, Amsterdam University, The Netherlands, and Boston
University, USA have shown interest in collaborating with
- The Departments of Physics and Computer Science have
worked in tandem to develop a solar power source for
computers in the college and a prototype model has already
been built to test the concept.
- Visits of the Committee were also arranged to the
various laboratories such as Physics, Statistics,
Chemistry, Microbiology, and Biotechnology. The facilities
have been nicely built for which part of the CPE funds
have been utilized.
- The Committee also interacted with the faculty of
Commerce (evening shift), Sociology, English, Economics
and Political Science. The concerned faculty explained to
the Committee about the novelty of their courses.
- The Sociology Department encourages the students to go
to villages, stay with the villagers and gain practical
experience. They also have planned for web-based
interaction. They have tutorial classes which have helped
the students immensely.
- The Committee also interacted directly with the
students by going to the classrooms, particularly, Mass
Communications, Chemistry, Biotechnology, Statistics and
- The Committee saw the library which is now
computerized and the students use the library in large
numbers. The departmental libraries are also kept open for
the benefit of the students during lunch hours.
- The college also undertakes campus recruitments and
renowned companies such Hindustan Unilever, Mckenzie, HSBC,
SBI, Infosys, IBM, Wipro, Satyam, TVS, Maruti Udyog, etc.
have hired their graduates. The salary packages range over
Rs. 1.80 to 7.00 lakhs per annum. These facts demonstrate
the relevance of the newly started courses by the college.
- The faculty was enthusiastic about the CPE in general
and expected that the performance in the self-financed
courses should be considered for infrastructure built-up
- The Committee also observed that the funds released
so far have been fully and properly utilized by the
- The Committee is overall impressed by the performance
of the college.
- However, the Committee observed that the college does
not have any connectivity through the INFLIBNET. Had these
facilities been provided to the college, it would have
certainly helped them to undertake contemporary research.
- The Committee after taking into consideration all
aspects of progress made by the St. Xavier’s College,
Kolkata, In implementing the CPE scheme strongly
recommends that the remaining funds of Rs.50 lacks be
released immediately so that the college is able to
achieve all its set-objectives within the time frame.
- The college should be made part of the INFLIBNET
without any delay.
G. D. Yadav
A. N. Sharma
Place: St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata
Dated: May 3, 2008