New Delhi: The University Grants Commission (UGC) on Friday asked all universities to make statutory changes to encourage students to pursue two academic degrees simultaneously in physical mode. The UGC had in April approved the proposal allowing students to pursue two full-time degrees together. The guidelines for it were notified on Friday. “All the Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs) were requested to devise mechanisms through their statutory bodies for allowing students to pursue two academic programmes simultaneously. It is once again requested that in the larger interest of the students, implementation of the said scheme may kindly be ensured and expedited, if not done so far,” the UGC said in a letter to universities.
As long as the class times for one programme do not conflict with the class times of the second programme, students may now pursue two full-time academic programmes in physical mode, under UGC norms. The Ph.D. programmes are exempt from it. “The objective of allowing a student to pursue two degrees simultaneously stems from recognising, identifying, and fostering the unique capabilities of each student, no hard separations between arts and sciences, between curricular and extracurricular activities, between vocational and academic streams, etc. and enabling an individual to study one or more specialized areas of interest at a deep level, and also develop character, ethical and constitutional values…,” stated the guidelines.
The restrictions will be in force as of the UGC’s notification date, which is September 30, 2022, and students cannot make any backdated claims. “Only HEIs that are approved to operate such programmes by the UGC, Statutory Council, and Government of India may provide degree or diploma programmes in the ODL (Open and Distance Learning) and online modes. According to the statement, “Degree or diploma programmes under these guidelines shall be governed by the Regulations notified by the UGC and also the respective statutory/professional councils, wherever applicable,” said the statement by UGC.