UGC Allows Students To Pursue 2 Degrees Together, Academicians Against It

New Delhi, 13 April 2022: Recently, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has made an announcement that the students will now be able to pursue two full-time academic programmes in physical mode. Following the new guidelines, students will be able to pursue two-degree programmes across domains such as sciences, social sciences, arts, humanities, and a wide variety of disciplines. Regarding this, the commission has put together a set of guidelines which will be released on the official website of UGC today, that is, 13 April 2022.

Overview Table of UGC’s Decision to Allow Two Degrees Together

Objectives Benefits
  1. The reason behind this decision pertains to the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020’s emphasis on the need to facilitate multiple pathways to learning – involving both formal and non-formal education forms.
  1. The decision allows a student to not just enrol in two physical programmes simultaneously, but also pursue two academic programmes, one in full-time physical mode, and another in open and distance learning mode. 
  1. It is also aimed at being in sync with the NEP’s vision of breaking down interdisciplinary separations.
  1. The students can also join a programme in a physical model in a university, along with another programme in an online mode. 
        3. Through this, a combination of the physical mode and online mode of education will be implemented to provide more freedom to the students to acquire multiple skills.
  1. The students can pursue two online degrees simultaneously.

Note: Till now, UGC regulations did not allow students to pursue two full-time programmes and they could only pursue one full-time degree along with online, short-term, and diploma courses.

UGC’S Move to Offer Two Degrees At the Same Time: Details

  • The guidelines will apply to all the programmes available across the country. 
  • Students can either choose a combination of a diploma programme and an undergraduate (UG) degree, two master’s programmes, or two bachelor’s programmes. 
  • If a student is eligible to pursue a postgraduate (UG) degree and also wants to enrol in a bachelor’s degree in a different domain, he/she will be able to pursue a UG and PG degree simultaneously. 
  • The class timing for both the programmes must not clash.
  • Adopting these guidelines is optional for universities and can be implemented only after the approval of the universities’ statutory bodies.
  • The rationale behind the decision to allow students to pursue two academic degrees simultaneously is to help them gain diverse skills.
  •  The eligibility criteria for each of the programmes will remain unchanged and admissions will be conducted based on the existing UGC, university norms.
  • The guidelines will only be applicable to lecture-based courses, including undergraduate, postgraduate, and diploma programmes. MPhil and PhD programmes will not fall under the same scheme.


Note

  • In the last commission meeting held on 31 March 2022, it was decided to issue guidelines that would enable students to pursue two academic programmes simultaneously.
  • The reason behind this decision pertains to the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 emphasis on the need to facilitate multiple pathways to learning involving both formal and non-formal education forms.
  • It is also aimed at being in sync with the NEP’s vision of breaking down interdisciplinary separations.
  • Through this, a combination of the physical mode and online mode education will be implemented to provide more freedom to the students to acquire multiple skills.

UGC’S Move to Offer Two Degrees At the Same Time: Benefits

  • The decision allows a student to not just enrol in two physical programmes simultaneously, but also pursue two academic programmes, one in full-time physical mode and another in open and distance learning mode. 
  • The students can also join a programme in a physical mode in a university, along with another programme in an online mode. 
  • The students can pursue two online degrees simultaneously.

Note: Since all academic programmes have minimum attendance requirements for students to be able to take the exams, universities will have to devise the attendance criteria for these courses. UGC does not mandate any attendance requirements and these are the policies of the universities. 

UGC’S Move to Offer Two Degrees At the Same Time: Response of Academicians

  • The University Grant Commission’s (UGC) decision to allow students to pursue two full-time degrees simultaneously in physical mode will affect the quality of education negatively. 
  • A full-time degree programme needs full-time attention and effort while others noted that the flexibility will also be offered by the Four Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP) to a larger extent. There is no need to prompt students to take the extra burden of a complete academic programme to have that kind of flexibility
  • As per a Delhi University professor, Abha Dev Habib, when a degree or a job is a full-time one, the whole concentration of an individual has to be on it. Allowing a student to earn extra credits in a degree is one thing and allowing them to earn an extra degree is different.
  • As per another DU Professor Rajesh Jha, the University Grants Commission (UGC) is assuming that a student is “superhuman” or a person who can study straight for 24 hours. He further stated that availability of two different degree programmes would dilute honours courses. As per him, the basic philosophy of honours courses is to provide comprehensive, intensive and advanced knowledge to students and even under honours courses, students can opt for discipline-centric courses. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the reason behind UGCs decisions to allow students to pursue two degrees together?

The reason behind the decision to allow students to pursue two academic degrees simultaneously is to help them gain diverse skills.

What is the attendance criteria for pursuing double degrees?

Since all academic programmes have minimum attendance requirements for students to be able to take the exams, universities will have to devise the attendance criteria for these courses. UGC does not mandate any attendance requirements and it depends on the universities to come up with their own attendance criteria.

Are the new guidelines applicable to MPhil and PhD programmes?

The guidelines will only be applicable to lecture-based courses, including undergraduate, postgraduate, and diploma programmes. MPhil and PhD programmes will not fall under the same scheme.

In which disciplines will the students be allowed to pursue two-degree programmes?

Following the new guidelines, students will be able to pursue two-degree programmes across domains such as sciences, social sciences, arts, humanities, and a wide variety of disciplines.

follow us for social updates