HRD Ministry notifies its amendment to Open Universities for MPhil and PhD programs

HRD Ministry amendment for open universities

Displeased over the University Grants Commission’s gross failure in restricting fake universities and chaotic growth of private and deemed varsities, the union government has appointed a high-level committee to suggest ways to restructure the commission. It has been four years subsequent to which the University Grants Commission had revised its guidelines, which allowed the open universities to accomplish MPhil / PhD programs. The HRD ministry has solicited the regulator to notify it. The amendment has not been put in action in the dearth of any notification.

After Indira Gandhi National Open University amended its regulation, the ministry’s proceedings have taken a start. Even though IGNOU has sought after the Visitor’s endorsement for its amendment but the HRD ministry will not be able to forward it until UGC advises the changes in the regulations.

According to a senior IGNOU official, “The IGNOU ordinance fulfils all the stipulations made in the UGC regulations.” He further added that owing to the delay no admissions could be made for MPhil/ PhD in January and July sessions. The ministry’s action comes in the wake of Indira Gandhi National Open University having already amended its ordinance. IGNOU has sought the Visitor’s approval for its amendment but the HRD ministry cannot forward it till UGC notifies the changes in regulations.

Other Universities can benefit if UGC notifies its regulations according to the ministry sources. The IGNOU official reinstated, “There is a need to bolster research in the country.”

According to Professor Satyakam, a Ph.D coordinator for Hindi at IGNOU, the Ph.D course of IGNOU can match up with the best in India and abroad.

The UGC in its 478th meeting, which happened in July 2011, had modified its UGC (minimum standards for award of MPhil/ PhD) Regulations of 2009. According to the amendment it was proposed that an Open University may be permissible to conduct M.Phil/ Ph.D programs through Distance Education which is dependent on the condition that it does so sternly as per the provisions of the regulations.

Again, the 11-point criteria laid down by the standing committee on MPhil/ PhD regulations, 2009 may be uploaded on UGC website and circulated to all institutions of higher education for information and further action. UGC had also stipulated that for undertaking PhD under distance education mode, the principal guide should be from within the Open University and a joint guide, wherever necessary, may be from outside the university.

It is predetermined that a teacher should not have more than two candidates, who will be working under their supervision as a combined guide.

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