Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University

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Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open Universityl
Yashwantrao-Chavan-Maharashtra-Open-University logo.jpg
Established1989 (32 years ago) (1989)
ChancellorShri Bhagat Singh Koshyari
Vice-ChancellorProf. E Vayunandan
Administrative staff
Location, ,
Websiteycmou.digitaluniversity.ac ycmou.ac.in

The Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YCMOU) was established in July 1989 by Act XX- (1989) of the Maharashtra State Legislature, named after Yashwantrao Chavan, Maharashtra's great political leader and builder of modern Maharashtra. It is the fifth Open University in India. The jurisdiction of the university is for the State of Maharashtra. The YCMOU has been recognised under section 12 (B) of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956.[citation needed]

It is a member of associations and bodies like the Association of Indian Universities, Association of Commonwealth Universities, Asian Association of Open Universities, and Commonwealth of Learning, Canada.

Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University is the only university in India to receive the CoL's Excellence Award twice for overall performance amongst the Commonwealth Countries.[1]

The University offers offline programmes and has also embarked on online initiatives. The YCMOU has its headquarters at Nashik and provides support to its learners through study centres, which are all over the State of Maharashtra.

Maharashtra has a long tradition of educational reforms. Mahatma Jyotiba Phule, Savitribai Phule, Panjabrao Deshmukh, Babasaheb Ambedkar, Bhaurao Patil, Swami Ramanand Teerth, Dr.Apte and others have contributed to educational philosophy and movement in the state.

Due to statutory powers conferred by a 1989 act of the Maharashtra state legislature and the recognition by the ‘University Grants Commission of India’, the university can award academic certifications like certificates, diplomas, and graduate, post-graduate, doctoral degrees.

Satellite-based education[edit]

The university has launched EduSat-based education, supported by the Indian Space Research Organisation. The university has established several Virtual Learning Centres in the State, each having two-way audio and video communication facilities. The students registered for programmes at the VLC attend lectures there. The experts deliver their lectures from the main hub at the University Headquarters or from the sub-studio at Pune. These live lecture sessions also provide scope for interaction with students located at distant locations.


The university has conversed satellite–based lectures into a streaming video format on the web. YCMOU has launched this facility under its MPSC-UPSC Competitive Examination Guidance Programme. Initially 30 lectures under this programme – each having a duration of two hours – were made available on the Internet for the students. Registered students could view these lectures from any place where a broadband connection was available. The Study Centers also arranged for group viewing of these lectures. Although this was a pilot run, lectures, video programmes and audio programmes may be made available on the internet in the same manner.

Mobile learning vans[edit]

This project of the university, designed to carry education to remote rural and tribal areas, involves the use of mobile learning vans. The mobile van is a road transport vehicle equipped with computing and communications equipment. It has a seating capacity of 12 learners and has six computers installed i.e. two students per computer. Using multimedia projection system, a larger group of about 50 students can be given education. An on-board generator provides a power supply.

The mobile van has the capability to educate virtually, using a transmitting station and a set of mobile van. The hub, located at University HQ, is where educational content is produced. The mobile vans receive the educational content and view it on computers in the mobile van.

The first batch of students was provided with computer training using the mobile van in Nanashi, a village with a population of around 2500. It is 90 kilometres (56 mi) from Nashik city. Fifty-six students were registered for the first batch. The second batch running over the next three months was also implemented at this village. After the successful completion of the second batch, the mobile learning centre moved to Harsul, another tribal area. Harsul is also a small village having a population of 3500. Two batches of computer literacy programmes were successfully implemented at Harsul.

The fifth batch of computer training was implemented at another tribal area in Peth. The sixth and seventh batches were conducted in rural areas in Trimbakeshwar. Presently the eighth batch is undergoing training in a tribal area in Borgaon, a small village in Surgana Tehsil. As the project proceeds further, more and more village and tribal communities will get access to higher education.

Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Nashik[edit]

The Indian Council of Agricultural Research New Delhi established the Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) at Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University Nashik in 1994. It is a farm science institution providing training and information services for training and skills in the field of agriculture and rural development. KVK has also established a model farm to disseminate and demonstrate the techniques suitable to the local farming community. This farm, equipped with modern irrigation systems, has crops such as mangos, grapes, sapota, guava, amla, cashewd, litchi, coconut, custard apple, and jackfruit.

The KVK has an Administrative building measuring 600 square miles (1,600 km2) with facilities for Soil & Water testing, Phyto diagnostic, Post Harvest Technology Laboratory and an Agricultural Technology Information Centre. Hostel facilities that can accommodate about 30 farmers are also available in the KVK premises. A novel experiment has also been undertaken with high density plantation, multi-stored cropping and high tech floriculture, use of biotech techniques for pest management, vermiculture biotechnology and modern nursery with various shed net houses to meet the training need of farmers and to supply the required planting material to them. The fruit orchard and polyhouses of the KVK yield considerable commercial production. Last year, 7,500 kilograms (16,500 lb) of Kesar mango was exported through an agency to Japan.

A village concept to demonstrate various farming technologies has also been successfully implemented through a participatory group approach. This has led to increased productivity and overall output of the village and has made a concrete difference to the standard of living of the villagers.

Yashwantrao Chavan Smruti Sangrahalay[edit]

A separate building showcasing various things related to Yashwantrao Chavan has been organised. The Sangrahalaya highlight the life of Yashwantrao Chavan. A replica of his village house has been the attraction of visitors. The University has maintained a Special Collection on Yashwantrao Chavan. The Collection includes books written by Yashwantrao Chavan as well as the books written on him. The Collection covers Books, Annuals, Press Clippings, and Photographs etc.

Dai (Midwife) training programme[edit]

Half of India's births take place at home due to underdevelopment in many blocks. Even though part of the national policy for promoting hospital births, the School of Health Sciences launched a Dai training programme of 10 credit points. This is a unique programme in the health sector. Three books and a workbook coupled with a PowerPoint package have been specially developed under this programme. In the first batch, the dais of Nandurbar—a backward tribal district of Maharashtra- participated in this programme. The programme has now been offered in many rural and urban locations. Recently the programme was also shared with a Bihar NGO in Hindi. Since home births still continue in many parts of the country, we wish to share this programme with other SOUs and institutions.

Annual awards[edit]

To encourage the budding talent in different forms of literature at the State level as well as with a view to giving recognition to the distinguished social contributions of certain individuals, the university has instituted the following awards that are given annually.

  • Vishakha Kavya Puraskar: The award named after the poetic composition of the poet laureate and winner of the Dnyanpeeth Award, Shri V.V. Shirwadkar (popularly known as ‘Tatyasaheb’) is given to the best three maiden poetic compositions.
  • Baburao Bagul Gaurav Puraskar: In recognition of the noted contributions of Shri Baburao Bagul to the field of Marathi literature, an award has been instituted in his name and is given to the maiden writing productions of a budding short-story writer.
  • Rukmini Puraskar: This award is given to a woman who has made outstanding contributions in social work.

Institution of Chairs[edit]

The aim of the Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University is to become a Mass University and the University has a conscious realisation of her commitments to the community. The university endeavors to achieve this through its Student Welfare and Extramural Studies Centre. Among the various activities regularly conducted may be mentioned the ‘Lok Samwad Satra’ lectures on the occasion of the death anniversaries of Shri. Yashwantrao Chavan, Mahatma Phule, B. R. Ambedkar and Panjabrao Deshmukh - all devoted and dedicated visionaries who embarked upon the movement of social change and made indelible contributions for the upliftment of society. Through the organisation of public lectures by eminent thinkers, social reformers, activists and scholars on these days, the university achieves a dialogue with society and is able to reach out to the common man. The university has also instituted the following Chairs as a tribute to the very significant contributions of some illustrious persons:

Savitribai Phule Chair[edit]

Mahatma Jyotiba Phule and his wife Savitribai Phule embarked upon the movement of Female Education and Social Reforms in Maharashtra in the 18th century. Today too, an urgent need is felt to continue the process of emancipation of women and transformation of their lives. For this purpose, the Savitribai Phule Chair was instituted by the university. To monitor the functioning of the Chair, a State Level Steering Committee headed by Snehalata Deshmukh, former Vice-Chancellor, Mumbai University has been constituted. The action plan of the Chair aims at overall development of women in rural and urban areas and the focus of its functioning is on upliftment of women who hail from the neglected and downtrodden strata of the society.

Mahatma Gandhi Chair[edit]

Mahatma Gandhi, an apostle of Peace, was not merely the Father of Indian Liberation but also the architect of major social reforms and the overall spiritual regeneration of the country. With the conviction that Mahatma Gandhi's Philosophy of equality, peace, non-violence and communal harmony is relevant even today and in fact, is the need of the hour, the Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University has instituted the Mahatma Gandhi Chair. Under this initiative, a programme has been formulated to enlighten the people born in the post- Independence period about Gandhiji's life and Philosophy. As a part of the programme, a seven-day Residential Camp with the theme 'The Relevance of Mahatma Gandhi's Philosophy Today' was organised during 9 to 15 October 2007 in collaboration with Mumbai Saroday Mandal. 185 students accompanied by their teachers from various parts of the country participated in this Camp. Besides Prayer, Shramdan, Group discussions, Paper presentations and Cultural programme, the participating students were enlightened on Gandhiji's life, work and philosophy. On 30 January 2008 a Bhajan Spardha was organised by the university. Nearly two hundred school children participated in this competition and enthralled the audience. These two programmes are intended as a prelude to further activities under the Mahatma Gandhi Chair of the university.

Special programmes[edit]

Jail inmates[edit]

A special initiative of this university has been to offer educational opportunities to those who are otherwise treated as social outcasts, mainly as a result of their own doings. The prison inmates, apart from serving their term in jail also need an alternative channel to improve their overall attitude towards life and towards their own social setting. With a view to creating a positive attitude in them through imparting education, the university has established Study Centres in the Central Jails at Nagpur, Kolhapur, Nashik, and Pune. Opportunities for receiving academic counselling support are provided in the prison itself and the programme fees have been waived in their case. During the last five years, the total enrolment of Jail inmates in the State of Maharashtra has been over 2,300 and a number of students have even completed their graduation while in jail.

Visually impaired[edit]

The visually impaired constitute a 'special group' to whom society must pay concerted attention. Many of them actually aspire for higher education and if given an opportunity, they can also excel in a given field. Realising this need, YCMOU has offered educational opportunities to this group by waiving their fees for various academic programmes. In fact, training in computer skills has also been accomplished for some of these less fortunate fellowmen. By virtue of such initiatives, the university concretely endorses its compliance with the international laws for the handicapped. During the last five years the total enrolment of visually impaired persons in YCMOU has been over 300.

Sport activities[edit]

The University conducts Sports meets every year. The sports meets are organised by eight Regional Centers of the University at regional levels and the students of the study centres in the jurisdiction of the respective region participate in these regional level sports tournaments. After the completion of the regional level tournaments, the students of the eight regions who excel at the regional level tournaments participate in the sports meet organised by the University. Students exhibiting good performance at the university level are sent for the All India Association of Universities tournament and The State level Inter-University tournament ‘Ashwamedh’ every year. The performance of the students of this university in these tournaments so far has been steadily improving. To spur the students to participate further in sports activities, incentive marks (maximum 10) are given to those who excel in various tournaments in accordance with the rules framed for the purpose. Similarly, the students of this university who win gold medals in "Ashwamedh" are deployed in the services of the University in keeping with the rules framed for the purpose.


In the year 1997 the Annual Inter University Tournament called 'Ashwamedh' was started to create an atmosphere conducive to sports and to provide students with an opportunity to display their talent in the field of sports. Every year the responsibility of organising 'Ashwamedh' is borne by one of the Universities in Maharashtra.

Cultural activities[edit]

Youth festivals are organised every year at eight Regional Centers and the students of the Study Centres of the respective regions participate in programmes like One Act Play, Folk Dance, Singing, and Fine Arts. The student artists who show excellence are invited to participate in the University level Youth Festival. The students who win laurels at the University level Youth Festival are further given an opportunity to represent the Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University in the Inter-University Youth Festival called 'Indra-dhanushaya'. The Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University has been entrusted with the responsibility of organising 'Indra-dhanushaya' 2008 at Nashik.

Library and Resource Centre[edit]

The Library and Resource Centre (LARC) of YCMOU is an important unit that provides academic support through the learning and reference resources it provides.


  • Support the academic activities of in-house academics and outside experts by providing information sources for the development of learning material.
  • Support the reference and information needs of post-graduate and research students of the university.
  • Provide documents and comprehensive reference and information services in the area of Open and Distance Education for other distance education institutes in the State.
  • Provide assistance to coordinators of the Library and Information Science programme of the University.


Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University's awarded degrees are recognised by UGC in India. YCMOU is a member of Association of Indian Universities (AIU) and AAOU.

All architecture graduate and post-graduate programmes are recognised and approved by the "Council of Architecture (CoA)". Hence, after successful completion of the graduate degree programme (that is, BArch), students can register with the "Council of Architecture (CoA)". Students shall be entitled to practice as an architect after such registration.

All these degrees and post-graduate degree programmes are recognised and approved by the 'University Grant Commission (UGC)’. Hence, these programmes are equivalent to the respective programmes offered by any other statutory university in India, for the purpose of employment, promotion and further education.

International awards[edit]

This university is a recipient of Institutional Excellence Award-2002 and Sept-2019 from Commonwealth of Learning (COL), Canada.

CoL Award For the Second Time

Commonwealth of Learning (CoL), the apex body of open and distance learning universities in the commonwealth countries has honored the Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YCMOU) Nashik with an Award of Institutional Excellence. The CoL's adjudication panel of experts appreciated YCMOU's impressive record of reaching millions of students and fulfilling the promise of technology and open learning by taking learning opportunities to where students are located. The award was handed over to the Vice chancellor Prof. E. Vayunandan and Registrar Dr. Dinesh Bhonde on September 11, in a Ninth Pan Commonwealth Forum on Open Learning at Edinburgh, Scotland.[2]

Academic Schools[edit]

  • School of Agricultural Science
  • School of Architecture, Science and Technology
  • School of Commerce and Management
  • School of Computer Science
  • School of Continuing Education
  • School of Education
  • School of Health Science
  • School of Humanities and Social Sciences


  1. ^ https://ycmou.ac.in/awards
  2. ^ Sep 15, TNN | Updated; 2019; Ist, 4:15. "YCMOU honoured with Award of Institutional Excellence | Nashik News - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 9 November 2019.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)

External links[edit]

Official website