Category Archives: Regulation

UGC : Students can now pursue two degree courses at same time

Indian Express - Anubhuti Vishnoi : New Delhi, Wed Aug 14 2013, 00:52 hrs

The University Grants Commission has finally given the go-ahead to students to pursue two degree programmes simultaneously.

Giving in to long-standing demands from universities and students, the apex higher education regulator, at a meeting on July 31, decided to accept its expert panel’s recommendations on permitting pursuit of an additional degree programme.

This will allow students enrolled in a regular full-time degree programme to pursue one more additional degree programme simultaneously on open/distance learning mode from the same university or another institution. A student pursuing a regular degree will also be allowed to pursue an additional certificate/diploma/advanced diploma/PG diploma programme simultaneously either in regular or open/distance mode from the same university or another institution.

The UGC expert panel headed by Dr Furqan Qamar, Vice Chancellor, Central University of Hyderabad, had made these recommendations “in view of the changing scenario and flexible guidelines”. Saying that “more choices to the students need to be given”, the panel was of the view that joint degree programmes need to be encouraged by the UGC.

UGC Chairman Prof Ved Prakash said the idea was to allow new opportunities to students who wish to expand their skill set and have the will to stretch themselves beyond their comfort zones. Universities have been asked to modify their ordinances to facilitate the joint degree programmes.

Currently, no student in India can legally pursue more than one degree simultaneously either from the same institution or from any other institution. The restriction is applicable irrespective of the mode of pursuing degrees — open/distance learning/part-time/private or full time. To ensure compliance, students are required to submit in the original the migration certificate issued by the previous institute.

While there has been a lot of interest to pursue two or more degree programmes simultaneously to help students improve their knowledge, skill and employability, the present UGC guidelines are silent about the pursuit of a certificate/diploma course alongside a degree programme.

AICTE Permission not required for MBA , MCA Courses if University Approved : Supreme Court

MBA, MCA courses: SC rejects AICTE appeal

Utkarsh Anand : New Delhi, Fri Jul 26 2013, 08:55 hrs

The Supreme Court has found no merit in an appeal by the All-India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) against a verdict that colleges affiliated to a university were not obliged to take separate permission from it for conducting MBA and MCA courses.

“We have considered the averments in the review petitions. Having regard to the facts and issues involved, in our opinion, no case for review is made out. There is no error in the impugned order. Hence, the review petitions are dismissed,” said a Bench of Justices B S Chauhan and V Gopala Gowda as it dismissed the AICTE’s review petition.

In its April order, the Bench had ruled that MBA was not a technical course. Although MCA was a technical course, the court said, role of AICTE for its regulation could be advisory only.

“The AICTE Act does not intend (the council) to be an authority either superior or to supervise or control universities and thereby superimpose itself upon them merely for the reason that it is laying down certain teaching standards in technical education or programmes formulated in any of the department of units,” the court had noted.

Writing the judgment, Justice Gowda had said: “The role of AICTE vis-à-vis universities is only advisory, recommendatory and one of providing guidance and (it) has no authority to issue or enforce any sanction by itself.”

The Bench said it was the University Grants Commission which had been given the power to regulate universities in relation to granting sanction/approval, maintaining educational standards and overseeing the fee structure including admissions to various courses offered by them, their institutions, constituent colleges, units and affiliated colleges.

The AICTE however had decided to file a review petition against this order, claiming it had been trying to bring in transparency in matters of recognition of technical programmes, run by various colleges and institutes, over several years now and so they would not want this exercise to go in vain.

Distance Education Council of IGNOU dissolved

In a major development, the Distance Education Council (DEC) of the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) has been dissolved. The Human Resource Development Ministry of India will entrust the University Grants Commission with all regulatory responsibilities of the Open and Distance Learning (ODL) education system.

“Pursuant to notification dated May 4 issued by the IGNOU, statute 28 of IGNOU Act 1985 dealing with the DEC has been repealed and deleted with immediate effect. Accordingly, DEC of IGNOU stands dissolved,” a UGC notification, dated May 28 stated.

The UGC said it was working on development of appropriate regulations for maintaining standards in ODL programmes/courses. “In view of the above, wherever applicable, universities may kindly ensure that no further affiliations/approvals are granted to any new centre for ODL programmes/courses till such regulations are notified and come into force,” UGC has appealed.

Headquartered in New Delhi, DEC was constituted under the IGNOU Act and was responsible for promotion and coordination of the open university and distance education system and determination of its standards in the country.

“Shifting of DEC from IGNOU to UGC is a good move in the interest of open distance learning programme in the country. With ODL emerging as powerful and sought after mode of learning in today’s age of globalisation, the empowered body like UGC could govern the affairs effectively,” sources from UGC said.

Set up by the Union government in 1956, UGC is a statutory organisation that has the unique distinction of being the only grant-giving agency in the country which has been vested with two responsibilities — of providing funds and of coordination, determination and maintenance of standards in institutions of higher education.