Rise in SC, ST, OBC Student Enrollment in Higher Education: Outpaces National Average in 5 Years

Modified On Jan 27, 2024 03:07 PM by Mahaveer, Views: 1461

A recent survey on higher education across India shows that in the last five years, more students from marginalized communities, including scheduled caste, scheduled tribe, and other backward castes, have joined college compared to the overall national average.

From 2017-18 to 2021-22, the total number of students in college went up by 18.1%. But for SC students, it's even more – 25.43%, according to the education ministry's report. The biggest increase was for ST students – a 41.6% growth in the last five years. OBC student enrollment also went up by 27.3% during the same time. Since 2014-15, the number of female ST students in college has gone up a lot – by almost 80.1%. That's an extra 7.5 lakh girls joining.

Five years ago, when a total of 3.66 crore students were in college, those from the SC community were 52.8 lakh. Now, in 2021-22, that number has grown to 66.22 lakh. For ST students, it was 19.13 lakh in 2017-18, and now it's 27.1 lakh. In the OBC category, the enrolment was 12.83 lakh five years ago, and it's gone up to 16.33 lakh in 2021-22.

More women are joining college in the SC, ST, and OBC categories. For SC women, it went from 25.1 lakh in 2017-18 to 31.71 lakh in 2021-22, a 26.6% increase. ST women increased from 9.1 lakh to 13.46 lakh, a 47.6% rise. In the OBC category, female students grew by 27.2%, from 61.44 lakh to 78.19 lakh in the same period.

In India, about 28.4 out of 100 young people between 18 and 23 years old are in college. For students from SC and ST communities, the numbers are a bit lower – 25.9 and 21.2 out of 100, respectively. The higher the number, the more people from that age group are going to college.

The number of Muslim students increased by only 14.7%. The number of Muslim students in college didn't go up as much. In 2021-22, there were 21.1 lakh Muslim students. Over five years, the increase was only 14.7%, going from 18.4 lakh in 2017-18 to 19.22 lakh in 2020-21. For Muslim women, it went from 8.98 lakh in 2017-18 to 10.4 lakh in 2021-22.

The education ministry has been doing this survey since 2011. It looks at all the colleges and universities in the country. The survey asks for lots of details, like how many students and teachers there are, what the buildings are like, and how the money is spent.


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