In a major shift in its regulation process, University Grants Commission (UGC) has decided to allow recognition of ‘Online Education’ Degree/ Diploma obtained from the UGC recognised universities. So far UGC does not have the mandate to recognise online programmes. The apex higher education regulator has come up with a draft regulation to regulate and recognise Online Education in India. The Draft Regulation states, “Institutions may design, develop and deliver ‘Online Programmes’ leading to the award of a Degree or Diploma via the Internet, once recognized for the same.”
Jaspal S. Sandhu, Secretary of the Commission has invited feedback from all the stake holders on ‘University Grants Commission (Online Education) Regulations, 2017’. The deadline to submit the feedback is August 18, 2017.
Key points of UGC (Online Education) Regulations
As per the regulations, the Higher Education Institutions applying for offering online programmes should have been in existence as a University for at least five years. It should be a NAAC Accredited Institution with a valid minimum score of 3.25 on 4 point scale.
Further as per the draft regulation, the institution will be allowed to offer online programmes in only those disciplines in which it has already been offering the same or similar programmes in regular mode (classroom teaching) from which at least one batch has been graduated.
The programmes may be designed for conventional learners, as well as working professionals and other individuals aspiring to acquire knowledge and associated academic credentials.
The entire program delivery process shall be conducted online via a suitably designed online technology platform.
The institutions are required to prepare a Program Project Report (PPR) before applying to introduce any online program duly approved by its academic council.
As per the Draft Regulations, ‘online programme’ means the recognized course(s) of studies leading to award of a degree or diploma by approved institutions under these regulations imparting online learning instruction by such institutions through learning management system using e-tutorials, web resources, multimedia technology interface, web-based applications and e-learning materials designed towards providing flexible learning opportunities by overcoming separation of teacher and learner.
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