Who’s check­ing that for­eign de­gree?

NO GO In­dian and for­eign joint ed­u­ca­tional cour­ses are be­ing launched with­out UGC ap­provals, de­spite a reg­u­la­tion to con­trol growth of for­eign in­sti­tu­tions in In­dia

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - HT Education - - Front Page - Jee­van Prakash Sharma

Hun­dreds of ed­u­ca­tional de­grees are be­ing of f ered i n I ndia through col­lab­o­ra­tions be­tween In­dian and for­eign in­sti­tutes, but de­spite reg­u­la­tions which give it the man­date to ap­prove each course, the Univer­sity Grants Com­mis­sion ( UGC) has not re­ceived a sin­gle re­quest for clear­ance of pro­gramme.

De­spite the ex­is­tence of ‘the Univer­sity Grants Com­mis­sion (Pro­mo­tion and Main­te­nance of Stan­dards of Aca­demic Col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween In­dian a n d Fo r e i g n E d u c at i o n a l In­sti­tu­tion) Reg­u­la­tions 2012’, which was no­ti­fied in the gazette on Septem­ber 21, 2013 to con­trol the unchecked growth and vari­ant mode of oper­a­tions of for­eign ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions in In­dia, the UGC has so far not been able to per­form its reg­u­la­tory role.

Speak­ing to this cor­re­spon­dent, a se­nior UGC of­fi­cial ad­mit- ted that, till date, not a sin­gle for­eign ed­u­ca­tion provider had ap­proached UGC for its per­mis­sion to col­lab­o­rate with In­dian ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions for award­ing gen­eral de­gree cour­ses.

“Reg­u­la­tions 2012, which are still in op­er­a­tion to reg­u­late gen­eral de­gree and post de­gree cour­ses, de­fine what for­eign ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions mean and who can award de­grees etc. These also set the el­i­gi­bil­ity cri­te­ria and con­di­tions for col­lab­o­ra­tion for for­eign univer­si­ties so that the in­ter­ests of the stu­dents are not com­pro­mised. One of the pro­vi­sions of Reg­u­la­tions 2012 makes it manda­tory for a for­eign ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tion to pro­vide UGC with each and ev­ery de­tail of its MoU/col­lab­o­ra­tion with In­dian ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tutes and se­cure UGC’s ap­proval to start a de­gree pro­gramme. About a hun­dred in­ter­na­tional in­sti­tutes are of­fer­ing gen­eral de­gree cour­ses in In­dia but till to­day no one has ap­proached us for ap­provals,” says the UGC of­fi­cial.

There are a num­ber of in­ter­na­tional in­sti­tutes which have tie-ups with In­dian ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tutes to of­fer de­gree cour­ses. Three types of de­grees are awarded through such col­lab­o­ra­tions. One de­gree does not men­tion the name of the for­eign coun­ter­part on the cer­tifi­cate. For in­stance, BML Mun­jal Univer­sity ( BMLMU) and the highly re­garded Im­pe­rial Col­lege of Lon­don have col­lab­o­rated for de­gree cour­ses. A spokesper­son from BMLMU, clar­i­fy­ing the univer­sity’s po­si­tion on the col­lab­o­ra­tion says, “Im­pe­rial Col­lege Lon­don is the aca­demic men­tor of BMLMU.

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