In a significant development that could benefit many, the University Grants Commission (UGC) on Thursday introduced changes to its process for PhD and M.Phil admissions.
In a significant development that could benefit many, the University Grants Commission (UGC) on Thursday introduced changes to its process for PhD and M.Phil admissions. The Commission had decided to scrap the existing norm of according 100% weight of oral interviews, or viva voce, the sole criterion for admission to Ph.D and M.Phil programmes. The UGC has now decided to bring in a written test for selection. According to The Indian Express, the Commission has amended the UGC (Minimum Standards and Procedure for Award of M.Phil/ Ph.D Degree) Regulations 2016 in order to give 70 per cent weightage to performance in the written entrance test and 30 per cent to the oral interview for the final selection of a candidate.
Along with this, the Commission has also permitted a relaxation of 5 percent points in the minimum marks to be scored in the written test by SC, ST and OBC candidates. Due to this, the candidates who belong to the general category will now have to secure at least 50 per cent in the entrance examination to qualify for the interview or viva voce. On the other hand, a reserved category candidate will have to score 45 per cent.
Meanwhile, the University Grants Commission on Thursday approved regulations for online courses by universities. With this, universities and higher educational institutions will be able to offer graduate, postgraduate and diploma programmes online. Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar shared the news via Twitter. “In a landmark reform in the field of higher education, University Grants Commission has approved the UGC (Online Courses) Regulations. There was no such regulations earlier,” he wrote on Twitter. He added, “Today’s decision will help top rated institutions to offer certificate, diploma & degree programmes in full-fledged online mode in only those disciplines in which it has already been offering the same or similar programmes or courses at graduation level in regular mode.”
Under the new UGC (Online Courses) Regulations, 2018, any higher education institution will be able to apply for permission to offer such online programmes if they have been in existence for at least five years and are accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council, with a minimum score of 3.26 on a four-point scale to maintain quality. With the help of this regulation, institutions can now offer online programmes in disciplines in which it is already offering the same or similar programmes in regular or open and distance learning.