The University Grants Commission has drafted new set of regulations under which Indian students can now get a dual degree from Indian and foreign higher education institutions, separately and simultaneously.
The UGC has also introduced for students the benefit of credit transfer and joint degrees in institutions with collaborations with Indian and foreign higher education institutions.
“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; there shall be no further requirement of seeking equivalence from any authority”, reads the draft UGC (Academic Collaboration between Indian and Foreign Higher Education Institutions to offer Joint Degree, Dual Degree and Twinning Programmes) Regulations, 2021.
The new regulations say that Indian institutions for higher education can collaborate with foreign counterparts for “credit recognition and transfer and twinning arrangement for offer of degrees”.
But, these regulations will not be applied on online and open and distance-learning programmes.
UGC in an official notice stated “Budget announcement of 2021 proposed regulatory mechanism to permit dual degrees, joint degrees and twinning arrangements”. This is in line with the NEP 2020 that seeks more collaborations between institutes internationally.
As per the draft guidelines, the Indian higher education institutes in the top 100 in University category of National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) or institutions of eminence can collaborate with top 500 institutes in THE or QS World University ranking.
“If an Indian higher education institution issues an advertisement that it is offering a degree/diploma from a foreign higher education institution and if such collaboration does not have the approval of the Commission, the Commission shall conduct a preliminary inquiry and on completion of its inquiry, the commission shall initiate appropriate penal action against the Indian Higher Education Institution,” stated the draft guidelines.
Besides, “an academic collaboration between Indian and foreign higher education institutions to offer a joint degree, dual degree, and twinning programmes”, the draft said.