UGC Draft Finalised For Indian, Global Institutions Offering Joint Degrees

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New Delhi: Indian and foreign higher education institutions may soon be able to give out joint or dual degrees and twinning programmes after the University Grants Commission (UGC) finalised a draft for the regulations of these courses.

A final decision regarding the matter will be made after the higher education regulatory body evaluates the feedback received on the draft that is in the public domain, reported news agency PTI.

As per the draft UGC (Academic Collaboration between Indian and Foreign Higher Education Institutions to offer Joint Degree, Dual Degree and Twinning Programmes) Regulations, 2021, India’s higher education institutions can associate with foreign counterparts for credit recognition and transfer, twinning arrangement as well as offer degrees.

The regulations though will not be applicable to courses offered in online and open and distance learning mode.

“Any Indian institution accredited by National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) with a minimum score of 3.01 or in the top 100 in University category of National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) or an Institution of Eminence can collaborate with any foreign institution in top 500 of Times Higher Education or QS World University ranking automatically whereas other Indian institutions and any foreign institution accredited by an assessment and accreditation agency in their homeland will have to seek approval of the UGC,” the draft was quoted by the news agency.

Going by the regulations, any degree or diploma awarded based on these collaborations “shall be equivalent to any corresponding degree or diploma awarded by the Indian Higher Education institution and there shall be no further requirement of seeking equivalence from any authority”.

“The dual degree programme the degrees will be conferred by the Indian and foreign higher education institutions, separately and simultaneously, upon completion of degree requirements of both the institutions. The partnerships would be allowed for four types of academic collaborations, which include credit recognition and transfer, joint degree programme, dual degree programme and twinning arrangement,” the draft stated.

“Under the twinning arrangement, while a student enrolled in an Indian institution may undertake their programme of study partly in the foreign higher education institution, the degree or diploma offered shall be awarded by the Indian higher education institution only. The joint degree will be a single certificate bearing the crests and logo of both collaborating institutions,” it added.

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