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Sikkim Manipal University-Distance Education Programme: Ranked Best Distance
Learning Institute in India in Terms of Results and Efficiency
Careers360 magazine from the Outlook Group has conducted the first ever objective ranking of 30 leading distance
learning  institutions  across  India  based  on  qualitative and quantitative  parameters. The results validate Sikkim
Manipal University’s constant endeavor to make quality education accessible to everyone keeping in mind both
industry and student needs.

The  ranking  was  determined  after  examining  30 top Distance Learning institutions across three broad domains
namely Reach & Resources, Learning & Experience and Results & Efficiency. Nimesh Chandra, Head of Research of
Careers360  had  spearheaded  the  exercise  collating  data  on  all  existing distance learning institutions, visiting
select universities, study centers and interview with stake holders (link to methodology scan/ image).

There  are  249  Open  and  Distance  Learning Institutes in India out of which 176 institutes are currently offering
Distance  Education  Programmes.  Careers360  shortlisted   50  institutions  based  on  student  enrollment   data.
Careers360  then  sent  letters to these institutions with a questionnaire. Additional data was also taken from the
Distance  Education  Council (DEC). Based  on  the  responses received from these institutes, final 30 were chosen
for  ranking  processes.  These  then  were  subjected to a thorough research that included visits by  the  research
team  of  Careers360  magazine, focus on infrastructure and diversity of the institutions, and its reach. The whole
research   process  emphasized  on  quality  of   resources ,  delivery  mechanisms   and  output   focusing  on  the
performance of the institute in helping the trained student getting a better career prospect.

Scoring  a  sum  total  of  616  points,  Sikkim  Manipal  University is ranked 3 overall in the list of the best distance
learning  institutions  across  the  country.  Importantly  SMU-DE’s  methods  towards  efficiency  of  teaching and
interactive learning have earned it rank 1 and 2 respectively. Teaching efficiency is a must in distance learning as
this mode focuses on self learning. Hence getting the right message across from the faculty to the student is vital.
Similarly  interactive  learning  has  by  far  been  considered  as  a  major  hindrance  in  distance  education when
compared  with  regular  colleges. Institutes like Sikkim Manipal University has successfully negated this drawback
thereby  increasing  industry  acceptance  of  distance  education  and  making  the  learning  experience  a  more
enjoyable  one. SMU-DE also found special mention in the article with regards to Public Private Partnership model
that works.  SMU-DE  has  always  believed  and  delivered courses that are in sync with the needs of the industry
making  sure  that  the student gets a degree that will facilitate his career growth. Students at SMU-DE don’t just
get an higher education, they get a degree that works!

Established in 1995,  Sikkim Manipal  University  is a public-private partnership between the Government of Sikkim
and Manipal Education. With a student strength  of nearly 1,77,000, the institute offers distance education across
11 broad disciplines aided by 65 core faculty members and over 6,500 mentors. The disciplines include Information
Technology,   Management,  Hospitality   Management,  Journalism  and   Mass  Communication,  Biotechnology,
Bioinformatics, Apparel & Fashion Designing, Allied Health Sciences, Telecom, Commerce and Fire & Safety.

Making  it  easy  for  students  to  learn  faster  is  the  multi award winning learning system EduNxt. EduNxt allows
students  to  access  faculty mentors, industry  experts,  counseling,  virtual classrooms, self-learning materials and
over a million journals. All  this  can  be  done  24x7 helping students to plan their studies beforehand. Moreover it
allows students time to work and earn while they study thereby gaining crucial industry related experience as well
as being self reliant financially. For  students  eager  to  study in a classroom environment there are more than 725
University authorized Learning Centers across 310 cities that have their own certified faculty and counselors ready
to help students at all times.

The  findings  of  the  research  have  once  again put the focus back on SMU-DE as being the undisputed leader in
teaching efficiently. From here on we strive to make the experience and value of studying at SMU-DE even better
and  it’s  now  our  aim  to  come  at  rank  1  across  all  categories.  Students  at  SMU-DE don’t just get an higher
education, they get a degree that works!

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