National, September 06, 2020: On September 5, the University Grants Commission (UGC) finalized its integrated online and distance learning regulations to provide easier access to students. Under these regulations, the top 100 universities in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) or those with 3.26 or above National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) grades will be permitted to provide online courses without prior permission.
“@ugc_india integrated distance and online regulations notified in the gazette focusing on access and equity on one side and quality-centric autonomy to the universities on the other,” Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ said on social media.
The decision to relax regulations for launching online programmes was announced in the Union Budget 2020 and reiterated in July as part of the measures taken to offer relief during the crisis brought on by COVID-19.
UGC Chairman DP Singh previously told Careers360 that the commission is considering a blended learning option for institutes when they are allowed to reopen post COVID-19.
“Keeping the changing environment in mind we are revising the regulations, we will allow universities having 3.01 grade in NAAC,” Mr Singh said.
According to the reports published in ndtv.com Institutions with a NAAC grade of 3.26 and above and feature in the top 100 in NIRF’s university rankings will not need separate permission to launch degree courses. The rest will need to seek permission, Mr Singh added
Under the integrated regulations, more universities will be able to start ODL and Online programmes, Mr Pokhriyal said.
“The integrated regulations are student-centric. Many quality provisions have been made to ensure mobility, equivalence among different modes of education, complaint handling mechanism,” Mr Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ said on social media.
The minister further added that the integrated distance and online regulations are compliant to budget and Aatma Nirbhar Bharat announcements made by the government.